There is a good vegetarian and vegan haggis article in The Guardian that covers different recipes. So if you are wanting to try out a different haggises (or is it haggi?!), then check out that article.
If you want to know how we make our vegan haggis, then continue reading…
To taste like meat or to not taste like meat?
First of all, our haggis is not designed to taste like meat haggis – just like our scrambled tofu is not supposed to taste like scrambled egg. So the Ferghan Mhor haggis is quite unique, although it shares some of the same characteristics to a meat haggis or vegetarian haggis like the strong peppery taste.
Over the last 24 months, we’ve worked on different versions of vegan haggis. We’ve tried adding cinnamon and other spices, raisins, celery, rice, Marmite, treacle and a list of other foods in order to try and get a unique, peppery taste with the “right” texture.
It’s still work in progress, but the recipe below is what we’ve settled on for just now. It makes enough for about 10 breakfast portions and creates a haggis mix, which you can then do what you want with; for instance, we’ve made haggis sausage rolls.
PS – see bottom of this article for the gluten free version
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
150g chestnut mushrooms (approx. 4-6 mushrooms)
1/4 cup of green lentils
1/4 cup of red lentils
1/4 cup of pearl barley
1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds (these are delicious)
1 cup of pinhead oats
3 x tbsp of muscovado or dark sugar
3 x tbsp of soy sauce (like Kikkoman)
3 tbsp of crunchy peanut butter (like Meridian)
Juice of a lemon (or 4 tsp of apple cider vinegar)
Herbs and spices:
1/2 tsp of parsley
1/2 tsp of rosemary
1/2 tsp of thyme
1/2 tsp of sage
1/8 x tsp of nutmeg
2 x tsp of ground pepper
How to make vegan haggis:
1.Cook the pearl barley for 15 minutes, then add the green lentils for 10 mins and then the red lentils for 5 mins. The pearl barley and green lentils should still have some bite to them i.e. don’t over cook. In a separete pot, simmer the pinhead oats for 5 mins to soften them slightly.
2. Whilst that’s cooking, chop the veg up and prepare the rest of the ingredients (see flavouring below)
3. Saute the onions in 3 x tbsp of margarine (or veg oil) for 5 mins, then add the herbs and cook for a wee bit more, so the flavour comes out.
4. Add the carrots and saute for another 5 mins
5. Then add the mushrooms and cook further for another 5 mins
6. Add the drained pearl barley and lentil mix and the drained pinhaed oats to the pan and keep it on a low heat as you stir in the black pepper and nutmeg
7. Add the pumpkin seeds and mix all together
8. To create the flavouring; mix the sugar, lemon juice, soy sauce and peanut butter all together. Make sure the peanut butter is well mixed in.
9. Take the haggis off the heat and mix in the flavouring well. If you need to add a touch of water then do so. The mix should be wet enough to stick together, but not too wet that it is running. Err on the side of being too dry than too wet, as you can always add a wee bit of water back in.
10. Add some more black pepper if you want. We normally do.
11. Stick the haggis in some Tupperware and leave it in the fridge to cool. The mix should last 2-3 days. It can also be frozen for short periods of time.
For breakfast, we cook the haggis mix in muffin trays for 15-20 mins at 200C, but you can just as easily mold it into a shape (like falafel balls) and bake / fry them like that. We’ve had mixed results with trying to make the mix into burgers or sausages (by adding some flour), so if you manage to get some good results please let us know!
The mix can also be cooked in a bread tin or cake tin and served as slices. And you could probably roll it in to a long thick sausage shape like haggis, cover it in foil and bake it. Or could could just put a a good dodd on a baking tray and bake it like that and then add it to a sandwich, slice of toast or even a wrap.
The best way we have had it is in sausage rolls. For the meat eating Scots reading this, it tastes like a bridie. Another tasty way of serving it up has been as a haggis, neeps and tatties layered “cake” (see below). So many possibilities!
Gluten Free and Peanut-free
You can make a gluten free version by using gluten free oats, removing the pearl barley and using gluten free soy sauce. You can also replace the peanut butter with almond butter.