Farmers’ recipe for success

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A NEW “centenary cookery book” produced to celebrate NFU Scotland’s 100 years features recipes by local farmers based across Galloway.

Farming folk from through­out Scotland were asked to contribute their favourite family recipes featuring Scotch Beef, Scotch Lamb and Specially Selected Pork for the book, which was compiled by Quality Meat Scotland. The book also features some starters and desserts.

Donald and Emma Biggar of Chapelton, Castle Douglas, share their recipe for Scotch Beef fillet Dijon. A partner and manager of his family beef and sheep farming business, Donald is a former chairman of Quality Meat Scotland and president of both the Hereford and Beef Shorthorn Societies.

Sally and Lamont Hair of Drumbreddan Farm, Ardwell, near Stranraer, are also featured.

Sally and Lamont share rolled shoulder of Scotch Lamb, a recipe starring their very own Drumbreddan Farm lamb which went down a storm with the world-famous Scissor Sisters at the Wickerman Festival last year when the band described it as “the best lamb we have ever tasted”.

Sally and Lamont, a former president of the NFUS Wigtownshire Branch, run their business with their son, Daniel, 23. Says Sally, who has been in catering for 20 years and always uses local produce where possible: “I think Wigtownshire produce is among the best in the world.”

Keen home cook Janice McCornick and her husband, Andrew, have farmed at Barnbackle, near Lochfoot, Dumfries, for 21 years and now run the farm which specialises in sheep and beef cattle, including pure Charolais, with sons Craig, 27, and Richard, 25. They’ve chosen a family favourite – lasagne – as their contribution to the book.

Former NFU Scotland president Jim Walker and his wife, Tina, meanwhile, opt for classic roast rib of beef. Jim, who was also chairman of QMS for two years, farms at Drumbuie, Sanquhar, which carries a herd of 500 beef cows and more than 2000 sheep.

All profits from the sale of the books will go to the NFUS Centenary Trust which has been set up by way of a legacy of this milestone in the Union’s history.

Quality Meat Scotland chairman Jim McLaren, also a former NFU Scotland president, said the cookery book was a colourful tribute to the dedication of those who work in the farming industry.

“My hope is that this book will not only commemorate a wonderful milestone in the union’s history but also serve as an enduring celebration of Scotland’s iconic meat brands – Scotch Beef, Scotch Lamb and Specially Selected Pork – in farmhouse kitchens across the land.

“Our thanks to all those who took the time to respond to the requests for recipes for this book, which is also a celebration of the quality assurance and traceability behind the brands and the many great characters involved in our industry.”

Nigel Miller, NFU Scotland presidents said: “Our thanks go to Quality Meat Scotland for their hard work in creating this book. Those who have contributed recipes span the length and breadth of Scotland’s fantastic food sector – farmers and restaurateurs as well as those who represent the wider industry.

“It is a fantastic celebration of Scottish produce and I am sure the book will prove a popular purchase during the year of centenary fundraising events we have planned for 2013.”

In its first year, the Centenary Trust will have three main aims – to get as many children as possible to visit a farm in 2013; to educate farmers, employees and their children on health and safety in the countryside with a special emphasis on children’s safety; and to assist in bringing forward a meaningful apprentice programme supporting farmers and their employees.  

The book, priced £10, will also be available to purchase at centenary events throughout 2013 and from NFU Scotland by ordering on 0131 472 4000. It was launched at the union’s AGM in St Andrews on February 12.