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The Flag in the Wind
Features - 'Auld Reekie' Cock-a-Leekie Soup

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'Auld Reekie' Cock-a-Leekie Soup

As part of St Andrew’s Day, 30 November 2006, celebrations Historic Scotland will once again open FREE of charge three buildings which have all played an important part in our country’s history – Edinburgh castle, St Andrew’s Castle and St Andrew’s Cathedral. This year sees the 10th anniversary of the return to Scotland of the Stone of Destiny, and it can be viewed with The Honours of Scotland in the Crown Room at Edinburgh Castle, The Stone on which the King of Scots were crowned was stolen in 1296 by Edward I of England and spent 700 years in English hands.

As always the Fife town of St Andrews is well to the fore in celebrating our Patron Saint’s day and the St Andrew’s Festival is now in its 11th year. The 2006 festival starts on Thursday 23 November and runs to Saturday 9 December with all the usual favourites including The Golden Spurtle Award for the best bowl of porridge in Fife. Visit for full details of the eleven days of colourful events and activities celebrating the very best of Scotland’s rich culture and cuisine.

This week’s recipe celebrates the ‘free’ showing of the Stone of Destiny in Auld Reekie with the combination of Scotland’s best known drink, Whisky, and her favourite soup in ‘Auld Reekie’ Cock-a-Leekie Soup.

‘Auld Reekie’ Cock-a-Leekie Soup

Ingredients:  3lb boiling chicken (giblets removed) ; 3 slices of streaky bacon; 1lb shin of beef ; 2 lb leeks; 1 large onion; 5 fluid ounces Scotch whisky; 4 pints water; 1 level tablespoon dried tarragon; salt and pepper; 8 pre-soaked prunes (optional but traditional!)

Method:  Mix the whisky, tarragon and sugar in the water. Chop up the bacon and place the chicken, bacon and beef in a large bowl and pour over the whisky marinade. Leave to soak overnight. Place the chicken etc in a large soup pot. Chop up the leeks (reserve one) and onion and add to the pot. Salt and pepper to taste. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for two hors, removing any scum as required. Remove the chicken from the pot, remove skin and bones. Chop the meat into small pieces and return to the pot. Cut up the shin of beef, if required. Add the prunes and the last chopped leek and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. It will serve up to eight people.  

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