Partridge, haggis, neeps and tatties

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A refined take on the traditional Scottish dish of haggis, neeps and tatties, Geoffrey Smeddle’s recipe includes honey-glazed partridge along with a neat ball of haggis. The tatties take the form of crisp game chips, while the neeps are delicate baby turnips. With a rich game sauce, this dish would be perfect for a Burns Night supper or a Hogmanay celebration.

First published in 2016




Partridge and haggis

Partridge sauce

Game chips

  • 1 large potato, peeled and thinly sliced on a mandoline
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying

Glazed turnips

To serve


  • Deep-fryer
  • Mandoline


Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
Begin by preparing the partridge sauce. Place a deep roasting tin over a medium heat and add a good tablespoon of vegetable oil. Once hot, add the partridge bones to the tray and roast for 25–30 minutes, or until the bones are golden
Add the chopped carrot and beetroot to the roasting tin and return to the oven for 6–8 minutes, then add the butter, chopped shallot, mushrooms, garlic and fresh herbs and return the tin to the oven. Roast for another 6–8 minutes, taking care that the ingredients don't over-brown
Add a good splash of sherry vinegar to the tin to deglaze it, scraping up any brown residue from the base of the tin. Stir in the stock and return the tin to the oven for another 30 minutes
  • 2 tbsp of sherry vinegar, to deglaze the pan
  • 1.2l brown chicken stock
Meanwhile, lay out the potato slices across a tray and sprinkle lightly with salt. Leave for 4 minutes to start drawing out the moisture, then rinse the slices and pat dry
Preheat a deep fat fryer to 180°C
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Deep-fry the potato slices until golden and place on kitchen paper to drain any excess oil. Season with a little more salt and cool completely on a wire rack, then transfer to an airtight container until ready to serve – they will stay crisp for a few hours
For the glazed turnips place the baby turnips into a small pan, cover with water and add the honey and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat and allow the turnips to cool in the cooking liquor. Store in the liquor until ready to serve
Remove the roasting tin from the oven and transfer the partridge sauce to a deep pan, adding the cloves, peppercorns and juniper berries. Cover the pan with cling film and allow to stand for 45 minutes
While the sauce is standing, add the sherry and Madeira to a large pan and bring to the boil. Cook until reduced by half
  • 75ml of sherry
  • 250ml of Madeira
As this is reducing, add the spices for the honey glaze to a dry frying pan and lightly toast until aromatic. Transfer to a spice grinder or pestle and mortar and grind to a powder
Place in a small saucepan and add the runny honey, warming through over a gentle heat until combined. Keep warm until ready to serve, or reheat gently first to ensure it remains runny
Once the sherry and Madeira have reduced and the sauce has rested, strain the sauce mixture through a fine sieve into the pan with the reduced alcohols. Mix well and check for seasoning, reserving until ready to serve
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
To cook the partridge, heat a large cast iron frying pan over a medium heat for 1 minute. Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil and heat through for a further minute. Season the birds all over with sea salt then add to the pan, browning evenly on all sides
Add the butter and baste the birds continuously as the butter melts. Turn the birds on their sides and add the garlic and thyme to the hot pan, then transfer to the oven to roast. Cook on each breast and on the backbone for 4 minutes each, basting in the butter with every turn
Meanwhile, slice the haggis into thick rounds and place on a baking tray. Cook for 6–8 minutes in the same oven, then transfer to a bowl
  • 150g of haggis
When cool enough to handle, roll the haggis mixture into 4 walnut-sized balls and place on a clean baking tray. Return to the oven for another 6–8 minutes, or until hot all the way through
Remove the partridges from the oven and allow to stand breast-side down and loosely covered in foil for 8 minutes. Remove the legs and trim out the thigh bones, trimming neatly around the drumstick bone for presentation
Carefully remove the breasts from the bone and place in the pan with the warm honey glaze. Turn until coated in the sticky glaze then transfer to serving plates.
To serve, place a glazed breast on each plate along with a leg and a ball of haggis. Pile up a generous serving of game chips on the side and scatter over the cooked and sliced baby turnips. Spoon over a little of the partridge sauce and season generously with black pepper
First published in 2016

Geoffrey Smeddle, proprietor and chef of The Peat Inn in Fife, started his career working for Herbert Berger at The Café Royal and for Christopher Galvin in London. He then sealed his reputation as one of Scotland’s top chefs by opening Terence Conran's Etain, in Glasgow.

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