The Whisky industry is still a major
factor in the Scottish economy but one which tends to be overlooked
nowadays with the emphasis on oil and electronics. Scotch, however, is
perhaps the best known symbol of Scotland, the world over.
"FREEDOM and WHISKY gang
thegither" wrote our National Bard and one man who firmly
believed in the poet's adage was the late Jock Mackie of Kirkcaldy.
Jock, an Ayrshire man, born and bred, was both a great fan of Robert
Burns and of our National Drink. For Jock, an avid Scottish
Nationalist, Whisky and Freedom did indeed "gang thegither".
Not only did he fervently believe in Scottish Independence but in the
belief that every Scot should distil his own Whisky. A baker to trade,
Jock added distilling to his bakery skills! For many years he made his
own Whisky until he fell foul of the authorities in the early 1960s.
An appearance in Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court resulted in a £50 fine and
the confiscation of the still. Unabashed Jock appeared on Scottish
Television that night and much to the consternation of the interviewer
produced a bottle of his own "illegal" hooch!
Unfortunately we cannot give you Jock's
recipe for distilling Whisky but the "water of life" is the
basis of an excellent use of oatmeal - Atholl Brose.
Ingredients for one serving : 2-4 rounded
tablespoons medium oatmeal, toasted; 2-4 fl oz ( 50-100 ml ) double
cream, stiffly beaten; 1 glass Malt Whisky; 1-2 tablespoons heather
Put the oatmeal into a bowl, mix in the
cream and leave to thicken. Pour in the Whisky and add honey to taste.
Atholl Brose ( The Duke of Atholl's
Ingredients for a house awthegither: 6 oz
( 200 g ) medium oatmeal; 4 dsp heather honey; 1 1/2 pt ( 750 ml )
Whisky; 1/4 pt ( 150 ml ) water.
Put the oatmeal into a small bowl and add
water to make a paste. Leave for one hour, then put into a fine sieve
and press all the liquid through. Add the honey to the sieved liquid
and mix through. Pour into a large bottle and fill up with Whisky.
Shake well and always shake before use.
And always think of independent Scots like
Jock Mackie when you tak aff yir dram!