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Hotch-Potch

As we approach St Andrew's Day (30 November) once again, the St Andrews Society, who have been organising celebrations on St Andrew's Day for over twenty years, have reminded The Flag that their eighth year of holding a St Andrew's Week in the Fife town named after our Patron saint, commences on Sunday 23 November 2003. St Andrew's Week 2003 presents eight days of colourful events and activities celebrating the very best of Scotland's rich culture and cuisine. The festival features a host of events and activities including concerts of traditional and classical music; exhibitions of arts and crafts; The Scott's Porage Oats Food and Drink Fair, incorporating the 'Golden Spurtle Award' for the best bowl of porridge in Fife; The St Andrew's Day Ball; ceilidhs; dances; drama; and on St Andrew's Day the Kite Festival and a spectacular fireworks display. Visit www.standrewsweek.co.uk for full details.
 
The place to celebrate St Andrew's Day is, naturally, St Andrews claim the organisers and they are to be praised in giving a lead to the whole of Scotland in celebrating our National Saint's Day.
 
Although not part of the official St Andrew's Week 2003, a Fife Farmers Market will be held on Saturday 23 November 2003, in appropriately Market Street, St Andrews. Enjoy the atmosphere and colour of the farmers street market with the provision of the freshest of produce and the best of prices from 9am to 1pm. Farmers Markets over the past few years have become a familiar sight in many Scottish towns, reminding us of the origins of Scottish Burghs and the granting of rights to hold markets and fairs.
 
Perhaps we cannot all be in St Andrews on St Andrew's Day but we can all enjoy a St Andrew's Night Dinner. In her splendid 'The Scottish Cookery Book' (1956) the doyen of Scottish food writers Elizabeth Craig suggests the following menu for a St Andrew's Night Dinner :-
 
                                                     The Fare
 
                                                     Oysters
                                          Brown Bread and Butter
 
                                                   Hotch Potch
 
                                                       Haggis
 
                                                Roastit Grouse
                                        Bread Sauce Fried Crumbs
 
                                                  Amber Puddin
                                                Switched Cream
 
                                                 Fruit and Nuts
 
                                                      Coffee
 
We take this week's recipe from her menu - Hotch-Potch - a Scottish soup worthy of St Andrew's Day.
 
Hotch-Potch
 
Ingredients : 1 1/2 lb neck of mutton; 1/2 teaspoon salt; 2 quarts water; 2 chopped onions; 2 diced carrots; 1 slice of turnip; 1/2 lettuce; 1/2 pint green peas; 1 medium cauliflower; 1 teaspoon sugar; pepper to taste
 
Place the mutton, with bones, salt and water in a saucepan. Bring slowly to the boil, then skim. Simmer 1 hour. Add onion, carrot, and turnip. Cover and cook gently for 30 minutes, then chop and add lettuce, and peas. Divide cauliflower into small sprigs. Trim off stalks and add. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes till all the vegetables and meat are tender, then remove bones and meat. Add sugar, pepper and more salt as required. Serves 6. The mutton can be served as a separate course, delicious with chappit tatties and mashed neeps,

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