Fish Supper

A fish supper is the most popular take away of choice after a good night on the bevvy. Dundee claims to have sold fish and chips first in Scotland in the 1870’s – it was supposedly sold by a Belgian immigrant in the city’s Greenmarket area.

Haddock or Cod are the main fish used in most chip shops.

In Edinburgh, fish and chips are traditionally served with salt ‘n’ sauce. In Glasgow, it is always salt ‘n’ vinegar which they claim is the correct and only way to serve fish and chips.

Being from Edinburgh, where we know best!  It is always salt ‘n’ sauce for me.

Years ago when I first went to London and asked for a fish supper in the local chip shop nobody knew what I was talking about, I thought everywhere in the UK called it a fish supper.

Scotland’s most famous chip shop is probably the Anstruther Fish Bar it has queues each evening, with people waiting to taste the freshest fish and chips around. It has won numerous awards throughout the years and is busy all year round.


Tae a Fish Supper by Jock Smith

Fair fa’ yer sonsie haddock or plaice,
Great chieftain o’ the battered race;
wi’ vinegar laced an’ chips an’ peas,
A sicht tae mak ye weak at the knees.

Wi’ plastic knife I stab ye braw,
An’ then staun back an’ stare in awe.
Wi’ a smell like you it is nae wonder,
My bellie rumbles, lood as thunder.

Is there that ower his haggis an’ neeps,
Or ower his Irish stew he peeps,
Wi’ envious glances at my plate,
Wishin’ it was you he’d ate.

A dish like you I hae each day,
As lang as yer din the Itie way,
Wrapped in the Daily Record ye lie,
A finer feed ye’ll never spy.

O’ Lord, forget yer breed an’ jam,
Or great big pieces wi’ lumps o’ spam.
Tae let me ken I wilna suffer–
Jist gae me a big fish supper.

(This was printed in the 1985 Burns Chronicle.)

Scottish Word of the Day!

Braw – fine, pleasant, attractive, pretty wonderful grand, super

She’s a braw lass! – She is an attractive girl

It’s a braw, bricht, moonlicht nicht the nicht“   – It is a wonderful, bright, moonlit night tonight)

It’s wis a braw day the day –  It was a grand day today



Rumbledethumps is a traditional dish from the Scottish Borders.

How can you not like a dish with a name like that?

Rumbledethumps is a quick and easy recipe often compared to “bubble and squeak”.

Supposedly the name of the dish comes from the sound of the wooden spoon thumping on the pan when mixing the potatoes and cabbage.

Serves 4

  • Cooked and mashed potato
  • Cooked and thinly sliced cabbage
  • 50g Butter
  • 125g Grated Cheddar Cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 200°C

Cook equal amounts of potato and cabbage.

Combine potatoes and finely chopped cabbage  mix with a wooden spoon to get the thumping sound that names the dish, in a large saucepan in which the butter has been melted while all the ingredients are still hot, and season well.

Transfer everything into a roasting tin.

Scatter over the cheese and bake until the cheese melts and colours.


Scottish Word of the Day!

Haud yer wheesht! – Be quiet. Hush Up. Shut Up.

Some folk don’t know when to haud their wheesht – Some people do not know when to shut up.

Will yer wheesht, you pair! Ma heid’s loupin! – Will you pair keep quiet, my head is throbbing!

Politicians, of course, find it harder than normal people to haud their wheesht.

Herring and Oatmeal

This is a traditional Scottish recipe for a dish of herring that are boned, coated in oatmeal before being pan-fried until cooked golden brown.

Herring and Oatmeal is a healthy, thrifty and tasty meal.

Wha’ll buy my caller herrin’?
They’re bonnie fish and halesome farin’;
Wha’ll buy my caller herrin’,
New drawn frae the Forth ?

Lady Nairne 1766-1845  Caller Herrin’

Herring Fillets Fried in Oatmeal
Serves 4

  • 4 small herringsSalt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tbsp medium or coarse oatmeal
  • 60g unsalted butter or lard

Season the fish well.

Spread the oatmeal on a plate and coat the fillets in it, pressing it on well.

Shake off any excess.

Melt butter or lard in a heavy-based frying pan until smoking.

Add the herrings and cook on a medium heat for a couple of minutes, carefully flip over and cook for a minute or two more, until cooked through.

Serve with lemon slice.

Scottish Word of the Day!

Scran – Food – A snack of food

Gis a bit of scran i’m starvin’ – Give me some food I’m starving

Thu’re gien me juist the merest scran o maet – They’ve given me just  a tiny bit of meat

That I may be blest wi’ health, And scran. – Robert Wilson, Poems Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect (1824)