TWO of Scotland’s leading musicians, Aly Bain and Phil Cunningham, took to the streets of Edinburgh today to launch a new cook book, developed by top nutritional scientists, aimed at putting a healthy spin on traditional Scottish fare.
The cook book - “Stovies Reloaded” - has been designed by experts at Aberdeen University’s world-renowned Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health to help spearhead a revival in Scottish recipes, beloved of Scottish grannies, amongst younger Scots.
It includes 21 Century recipes for Scotch Pie, Cullen Skink and Dundee Cake which have been adapted to contain less salt, sugar and fat to offer healthier versions of some of Scotland’s most famous fare.
The award-winning musical duo, who will be joining Jackie Bird to help the nation welcome in the New Year on BBC Scotland’s Hogmanay Live, joined Christmas shoppers in the capital to sample the healthier version of traditional stovies, one of 20 recipes which appear in the new book.
Said Aly: “We are huge fans of quality Scottish produce and it’s a great idea to come up with a healthy take on traditional Scottish recipes as we could all do with a bit of healthier eating.”
Professor Garry Duthie, from the Rowett, said the aim of the new cook book was to encourage people to rediscover traditional cooking skills and to eat a healthier diet. He said: Stovies Reloaded is our light-hearted take on traditional Scottish recipes and how they can be modified in the light of increased nutritional knowledge.
“There is, however, a more serious underlying message. Scotland still has a poor record in terms of diet and health. We hope that these “reloaded” recipes may play a small part in encouraging people to revisit traditional cooking skills, take an interest in traditional Scottish fare and make healthy meal choices.”
He explained: “We selected recipes from across the country and used specialist equipment to analyse the levels of salt, sugar and fat they contained. We then reformulated them to reduce these
levels as low as possible without compromising on taste.”
Professor Duthie said that many of the traditional recipes derived from Scotland were originally created with healthy, natural ingredients such as beef and lamb, oats, barley and root vegetables. But the movement to a more industrial-based economy had led to many changes in the dietary patterns of Scots. It was hoped the book would help inspire a revival in both traditional cooking methods and fare.
He continued: “Reviving traditional Scottish recipes known to our grandmothers and great grandmothers is not straightforward . The recipes have been largely forgotten by the younger generations and the fast pace of modern life and loss of traditional cooking skills now makes it difficult to prepare and cook many traditional foods from scratch at home. We hope that bringing back an appreciation of traditional Scottish food will bring benefits from a culinary and health perspective in the Scotland of today.”
Uel Morton, Chief Executive of Quality Meat Scotland, welcomed the new recipe book. He said: “The ethos of this cookbook ties in perfectly with our messaging around making the most of the top quality food we produce in Scotland – including our iconic Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb.”
Mr Morton added: “We are also encouraging consumers to better understand how to make the most of leftover meat and we have a dietician and a nutritionist on our staff who work hard to show children
and others how to cook healthy, tasty meals using beef, lamb and pork.
”I hope that many first-footing Scots will enjoy making a healthier start to 2014 by making the most of their roasts and rustling up simple, low-cost dishes like the stovies featured in this new cookbook.”