A Scottish New Year's: Hogmanay

A Scottish New Year's: Hogmanay


Yield : 6-8


New Year's is a very important holiday in Scotland, and they even have their own name for it:  Hogmanay.  This year, in honor of the Scottish poet Robert Burns, who is widely credited with writing the words to "Auld Lang Syne", set to an old folk tune, we decided to do a Hogmanay dinner party.

There are many traditions associated with Hogmanay, and serving traditional Scottish dishes is one of the most important.  The most famous (or perhaps infamous) Scottish dish is haggis.  Haggis is a kind of sausage made with the heart, lungs and liver of a sheep, mixed with onions, suet (mutton or beef fat), oatmeal and spices.  The mixture is stuffed into a sheep's stomach and boiled.  Unless you're a fan, that is all that you need to know about haggis, and it will not be on our menu.  Since our party is in America, we opted for a more conventional, although still traditional, meal.

Start with 2 appetizers:  the tart with horseradish cream and smoked salmon and chicken liver paté.  You can serve the tart on one of the Marieke wooden serving boards, like this one, or perhaps the Revol rectangular plate.  Assemble the paté on the crostini and serve on the Marieke Sophie Stitch Red cheese plate.  The first course is potato leek soup, followed by steak pie and buttered carrots with chives.  Shortbread cookies for dessert.

What to Drink :

Champagne with the appetizers; sauvignon blanc with the soup; an Australian Shiraz with the steak pie (or a stout such as Guinness or the Scottish stout Belhaven if you can find it.)  And of course, a glass of Scotch with the cookies.


We chose Karen Ballard linens for this party.  The table runner, placemats and red- and green-trimmed napkins are festive and seasonal.  Tie the reds, green, and white together with a tartan ribbon used as a napkin ring—we found ours at JoAnn Fabrics but you can find something similar at any fabric or craft store or on the internet.  The Pillivuyt plissé dinnerware is perfect with the linens, although you could also use any of the red and white Marieke dishes, like this or even this.  Serve the Scotch in our favorite cocktail glasses.

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