Scotch Broth inspired by Outlander

Scotch Broth - Outlander on STARZ Episode 112

Welcome home, Jamie and Claire! Together forever, right?

Of course, Jenny has a few things to say to her long lost brother before they sit down for a sup and a bite to eat...good thing she put that pot of broth on to cook before J&C appeared in the dooryard.

 

Scotch Broth Split Peas

Scotch Broth appeared under that name in cookbooks for the first time in the latter part of the 18th Century, though variations of this thick, hearty, stew-like soup had been cooking in cast iron kettles across the Highlands for hundreds of years before that.

My meaty version is definitely from a wealthier kitchen, like Lallybroch, rather than made by one of the Fraser's crofters, who would have felt fortunate to have a bone to put in the pot, never mind meat.

Scotch Broth lamb

A traditional Scotch Broth starts with lamb. Lamb can be difficult to find, and once you do, it's often expensive. I came across these shoulder chops when I was out shopping in the BIG city one day. They were crammed in the back of a frozen food case, looking freezer burned and a bit beyond their time.

Perfect for soup! So, I went and knocked on the glass above he the meat case to catch the butcher's attention. When I showed him my chops, he slapped a 50% off sticker on there and I left a happy, frugal chef. He knew he was lucky to get half of the original $12 price, so he was a happy butcher.

If you can't find lamb, then use beef. To be honest, more farmers had cattle in the Highlands than sheep before Culloden, so you certainly won't lose any authenticity either.

Scotch Broth Veggies

Next up is the veggies, and a Scotch Broth is chock full of them! This time of year was the leanest in the Highlands, as the winter kale crop failed before the farmers' early spring plantings of kale and spinach were ready for harvest.

My kale crop from last year is no different. I've got just 3 plants left, and they've all bolted to seed in the last week. That means my kale is a little tough, but that's balanced by the appearance of the flowering heads, which are gorgeous lightly sauteed in olive oil, and also make a beautiful garnish.

Scotch Broth Bowl

Soup doesn't get much heartier than this! A pot of this will feed a couple for a week...trust me. My Englishman and I are living proof.

A loaf of Honey-Buttermilk Oat Bread from Madame Jeanne's tastes great alongside.

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