Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Dish to Remember

It is hard to believe that 2012 is almost over! A busy year has flown by so quickly. After we strayed from tradition last year and ran off to Hawaii, we stuck around to enjoy a white Christmas.  We did miss the sun and sand but are toughing it out here. (Although we did buy a light up palm tree to change it up a little...)

The Christmas Palm
I trust everyone had a wonderful holiday season full of family, and friends, and delectable treats. I don't know about you but during the holidays I tend to think of loved ones that aren't with us anymore. Traditions are one way to bring loved ones closer and many traditions involve food. Perhaps this is because food can trigger memories and remind us of past holidays. I know that one way I like to bring my Mom a bit closer during Christmas is to make some of her recipes that she only made this time of the year. I still have some recipes and cook books to work my way through as they are still in my Dad's basement.(I did find her fruitcake recipe earlier this winter but didn't get a chance to make it. I will try it out next Christmas.)
A little tough to read, but I have a pretty good memory....
 This year, as in years past, I have one recipe in particular that I make every year.  It is a stuffing recipe that originated in Scotland that my Grandma used to make. Mom's recipe has it labelled as 'Mealy Jimmy' but for years we have known it as 'scurly'. A quick Internet search yields a few sites that confirm both names and recipes that are similar (and some recipes that aren't so similar). In layman's terms, scurly is essentially a poor man's haggis.  While there are absolutely no animal innards or offal in this dressing, it is called poor man's haggis because it was used by folks who didn't have sheep or anything really to make haggis.  The dressing is ridiculously simple and ridiculously tasty.

(taken from my Mom's recipe collection)

1 onion, chopped
3 cups Scottish oatmeal
1 cup beef suet
Salt and pepper, a healthy pinch of both

Mix all the ingredients together ans stuff into the cavity of a turkey before roasting. Roast your turkey as you normally would, scooping out the scurly when the turkey is fully cooked. Serve with the turkey and gravy.

If you have extra that you cannot fit into the turkey, place it in a baking dish, cover with foil and baked in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until hot and the oatmeal is cooked. If baking in a dish, you may need to add some chicken broth to moisten the oatmeal while it is baking.

Scurly is very tasty with gravy, served right alongside the turkey and all the other good stuff.  I particularly like to make a 'leftovers bowl' with scurly, mashed potatoes, peas, turkey, and gravy.....sooo tasty. (doesn't look pretty, but it is tasty!) I try to make sure we have scurly at Christmas and thanksgiving just for the leftovers and the memories of Mom are an added bonus.

A leftovers tasty. That's the scurly at the bottom of the picture.
Do you stick to tradition or do you like to change it up? How do you remember loved ones during the holidays?

Until next time, stay warm and eat well.


  1. YOU'RE BACK!!!!!

    I've missed you. Went to Sheetz (gas station that sells food), and they have jalapeno poppers and I thought of yours.

    I think of the family that passed as well. Bittersweet when making my grandmothers foods, but I make them year-round. I like though, when my kitchen smells like hers.

    Happy 2013 - Hugs

  2. FYI: Mealy jimmy is what we'd call white pudding. Oatmeal, onions, spice and suet stuffed into a pudding/sausage casing, so that it looks like black pudding/haggis. You can get this from many chip shops in the North of Scotland.

    Skirlie is fried oatmeal, onions, dripping/lard, all fried off in a frying pan.

    Though the cooking method for each is different, they can both be used as stuffing, although skirlie is traditionally eaten with boiled tatties.


Go ahead, make my day.....I love comments!! Please leave a comment and let me know what you think!