Ron’s Scottish meal
Scotch broth and cheese scones
Harvest of the day: lovage, chives, thyme, celery, savoy cabbage, parsley, bay leaf
- 75g/3oz pearl barley
- 1.15kg/2½lb lamb shoulder
- 2 litres/3½ pints cold water or lamb stock
- 2 onions, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- bunch fresh thyme
- 2 carrots, cut in 2.5cm/1in pieces
- 2 turnips, cut in 2.5cm/1in pieces (optional)
- 2 celery stalks, trimmed, cut in 2.5cm/1in pieces
- 1 heaped tsp sea salt flakes, plus extra to taste
- 2 potatoes, cut in 2.5cm/1in pieces
- ½ savoy cabbage, trimmed, cored and finely shredded
- handful fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- freshly ground black pepper
Put the pearl barley into a bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside to soak.
Meanwhile, pace the lamb in a large saucepan or flameproof casserole and cover with the cold water or lamb stock. Bring to a simmer and skim off the scum. Add the onion, bay leaf and thyme to the pan. Return to a gentle simmer and cook for one hour, skimming occasionally.
Add the carrots, turnips and celery to the casserole with the lamb. Season with the salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bring to a very gentle simmer, cover with a lid and cook for 30 minutes.
After the vegetables and lamb have been simmering for 30 minutes, rinse the pearl barley in a sieve under cold running water. Turn the lamb over. Add the pearl barley and potatoes to the casserole. Cook gently for a further 30 minutes, uncovered.
Stir in the cabbage and return to a gentle simmer. Continue cooking uncovered for a further 15 minutes or until the lamb is very tender and is falling off the bone and the barley is softened. Remove the pan from the heat
Lift the lamb out of the pot with tongs or a large fork and put on a board. Carve off all the meat, slicing or tearing into largish chunks and discarding any skin and bone. Season the broth with more salt and pepper to taste and spoon into large, deep plates. Divide the lamb between the plates and sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley.
Make 2 flavoured butters
Get some softened butter, chop your herbs and mix!
- 225g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
- pinch of salt
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 55g chilled butter, cut into cubes
- 120g mature cheddar, grated
- 90-100ml milk, plus 1 tbsp for glazing
Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 with a large baking tray inside. Sift the flour, salt, cayenne pepper and baking powder into a bowl, then sift again to make sure the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Add the butter to the bowl and combine with your fingertips to make breadcrumbs. Sprinkle 100g of the cheese into the breadcrumb mixture and rub together until evenly distributed. Try not to mix too much as the heat from your hands may start to melt the butter.
Make a well in the centre of the mixture and pour in enough milk to give a fairly soft but firm dough. Do not pour in all the milk at once as you may not need it all to get the right consistency.
Lightly flour a surface and roll out the dough to approximately 2cm thick. Cut out the scones with a medium (about 8cm) cutter, then put on a sheet of baking parchment, glaze with a little milk and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Slide onto the hot oven tray.
Bake in the oven for 15-20 mins or until golden brown and cooked through.
- 350g self-raising flour, plus more for dusting
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 85g butter, cut into cubes
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- 175ml milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- squeeze of lemon juice
- 100g sultanas
- beaten egg to glaze
- jam and clotted cream, to serve
Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Tip the flour into a large bowl with the salt and baking powder, then mix. Add the butter, then rub in with your fingers until the mix looks like fine crumbs. Stir in the sugar.
Put the milk into a jug and heat in the microwave for about 30 secs until warm, but not hot. Add the vanilla and lemon juice, then set aside for a moment. Put a baking sheet in the oven.
Make a well in the dry mix, then add the liquid and sultanas and combine it quickly with a cutlery knife – it will seem pretty wet at first. Scatter some flour onto the work surface and tip the dough out. Dredge the dough and your hands with a little more flour, then fold the dough over 2-3 times until it’s a little smoother. Pat into a round about 4cm deep.
Take a 5cm cutter (smooth-edged cutters tend to cut more cleanly, giving a better rise) and dip it into some flour. Plunge into the dough, then repeat until you have four scones. You may need to press what’s left of the dough back into a round to cut out another four.
Brush the tops with beaten egg, then carefully place onto the hot baking tray.
Bake for 10 mins until risen and golden on the top. Eat just warm or cold on the day of baking, generously topped with jam and clotted cream. If freezing, freeze once cool. Defrost, then put in a low oven (about 160C/140C fan/gas 3) for a few mins to refresh
We have even tried oat cakes!