When it comes to food, I’m a serious hoarder. I might not be the only one, but I get a weird panic about bare cupboards when I go out shopping, so I tend to overbuy. While this gives me a serene sense of wellbeing when I can see nine tins of chickpeas in the cupboard, it’s a practice that’s never good when you live in the world’s tiniest flat.
As a result, I’ve become fanatical about the process of food shopping (never go shopping hungry, always take a proper list, don’t get sidetracked – you know the drill), and about avoiding food waste. I hate wasting food, and being wasteful brings on the kind of guilt akin to not showing up to a best friend’s birthday. I can’t afford to be wasteful, I mean none of us can, really.
So, this week was Burns Night, and as is tradition, we eat haggis, because hi Scotland. I love haggis, really I do, and in eating it this week I made an exception to my newly discovered no-meat rule. But, even if you buy the world’s tiniest haggis, it will last FOREVER. We had it with our breakfast eggs (really good btw), in salads (ditto), as a random side dish to whatever else we were eating, until finally it was gone.
This gorgeous dish was the product of the must-use-all-the-haggis experimentation, and my gods, it’s good. It also comes with the added bonus of using up all of your tatties, too (that’s potatoes in Scottish, FYI). This would also work with any leftover sausage or black pudding meat, if you’re not the haggissing type.
Leftover Haggis with panfried sage and gnocchi
For the gnocchi
300g mashed potatoes (mash them thoroughly with milk, salt, pepper and a spoonful of Dijon mustard for extra loveliness)
25g grated cheddar
100g plain flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
A big tablespoon of cream cheese
A knob of butter, microwaved to melt completely in a biggish bowl (this is for transferring your cooked gnocchi to, after boiling)
Salt and pepper, to taste
A handful of leftover haggis – or any of the leftovers mentioned above
A big pinch of fresh sage leaves
A teaspoon of oil, ideally rapeseed but olive or vegetable is fine
Combine the potatoes, flour, egg, cheeses and salt and pepper in a bowl and beat together until well combined.
Boil the kettle and set the water to a simmer with a big pinch of salt in small saucepan.
Meanwhile, heat a frying pan with a teaspoon of rapeseed oil, a gently sizzle the crumbled haggis. It’ll pop as it gets hotter, which is nice to listen to.
With clean hands and a clean flat surface, grab a handful of the dough and roll into a rough sausage shape, about 2cm in diameter. Use a sharp knife to nip the sausage into 2-3cm mini sausages. Repeat with the remaining mixture.
Lower 5-6 gnocchi at a time into the simmering water. They only need about 2 minutes – when they rise to the top, they’re done.
Fish the cooked gnocchi out with a slotted spoon and transfer to the buttered dish while you do the others.
Add the sage leaves to the sizzling haggis in the frying pan, keep tossing and turning it as it cooks.
Once you’ve done all the gnocchi, give them a slosh in the buttered bowl so they’re all covered, then tip the contents into the pan – it’ll sizzle and spit if there’s any remaining water in the bowl, but this will evaporate.
Pan-fry everything until the gnocchi is catching on all sides and has patches of lovely golden brown crust.
Transfer to warmed bowls and serve.