Scots butcher creates halal haggis for Muslim clientele
The creation of a halal haggis, made with lamb killed in accordance to Islamic custom, means Muslims can now enjoy the traditional Scottish cuisine.
Jonathan Crombie, who owns award-winning sausage-maker Crombie’s of Edinburgh, created the dish after being sought out by a fast-food outlet that wanted to sell only halal goods.
The delicacy is traditionally made from sheep’s lung, heart and liver, oatmeal, onion and seasoning stuffed into the animal’s stomach bag.
Rather than using the stomach, the halal version is inserted into a plastic casing using a sterilised sausage filler and care is taken to avoid any contact with non-halal meat.
The firm produces around 150 halal haggises for the fast-food outlet in the city’s Leith area each month.
"Once you replace everything we put in the haggis with halal meat, then it is pretty straightforward. We sterilise everything at the end of the day and this is the first thing we put through and put it in artificial casings," Crombie said.
"This was something I saw as a bit of a challenge. I think as an industry we really need to look more at the haggis and what we can do with it."
Crombie, 34, who has worked for more than 20 years at the firm started by his grandfather, eventually accepted the challenge last year after being hassled for months by the Edinburgh chip shop.
The halal haggis was born when chip shop Paradise Cafe launched a search for halal alternatives to traditional fried foods after it opened under new management two years ago.
Manager Zabir Mughal said: "We wanted to have everything in the shop halal. I knew we could get sausages and pies but I was very keen to get haggis."
"We get a lot of Muslim customers and often it might be the first time they have tried something. A lot of the Asian boys will try it and love it."