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Raise your glasses to these mouth-watering recipes using whisky

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Susan Welsh shares three simple but delicious recipes that make the most of cooking with our national drink, whichever one of the many varieties you choose.

From the Highlands and Islands to the Lowlands, Scotland produces a wonderful selection of whisky.

Whether you enjoy it neat, served with a mixer or as an ingredient in a cocktail is entirely up to you, but what is certain is that there’s a huge variety of whiskies to choose from.

Scotch whisky is also a key ingredient in many a good recipe.

whisky tasting.

Some chefs compare using whisky to salt, in that it helps bring out the flavour of the food.

And during cooking, the evaporation of the alcohol concentrates the barley malt, and then caramelises sugars in the spirit, adding extra layers of flavour.

Here we are sharing a trio of recipes which all feature whisky, including one for a simple sauce.

It is delicious served alongside haggis but is also a great accompaniment to steak, chicken or even a nut roast.

For a delicious starter to share with others, try this recipe for whisky-cured salmon.

And to round off the meal?

How about this quick and easy recipe for cranachan made with a host of Scottish ingredients including oatmeal, raspberries, double cream, honey – and last, but not least, whisky.


Whisky-cured salmon

(Serves 8) 

Ingredients

  • 900g wild salmon fillet, boned, skin on
  • 85g coarse sea salt
  • 45g dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp black peppercorns, crushed
  • 2 tbsp juniper berries
  • 45ml whisky
  • 2 bunches of dill

Method

  1. Line a baking tray with paper; rinse the salmon under cold water and pat dry.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the salt, sugar, peppercorns and juniper berries.
  3. Sprinkle half the salt mixture on to the prepared baking tray and spread one bunch of dill on top.
  4. Place the salmon fillet, skin side down on top of the dill and drizzle over the whisky.
  5. Cover with the remaining dill, and top with the rest of the salt mixture.
  6. Wrap the salmon in a tight plastic wrap and refrigerate for 48 hours.
  7. When ready to serve, remove the plastic wrap from the salmon.
  8. Using the back of a knife, scrape the cure mixture off the fish and place on a large wooden board.
  9. To serve, thinly slice the salmon into diagonal strips, leaving the skin behind.

Whisky sauce

(Serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 3-4 tbsp whisky
  • 100ml double cream
  • 50ml stock (chicken, meat or vegetable)
  • Knob of butter
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard

Method

  1. Heat a frying pan or saucepan to a medium heat, add the knob of butter
    and warm through until it has melted.
  2. Add the whisky of your choice and warm through. Carefully, light the whisky with a match or lighter and allow it to burn off the alcohol.
  3. Once the flames have died out, add the cream, stock and mustard to the pan.
  4. Allow to thicken and reduce while continuing to stir. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Cranachan

(Serves 6)

Ingredients

  • 55g steel-cut (pinhead) oatmeal
  • 250g fresh raspberries (Scottish, preferably)
  • 475ml double cream
  • 3 tbsp good quality malt whisky such as Glenfiddich or Glenlivet
  • 1 tbsp Scottish honey, plus extra for serving

Method

  1. Heat a large, heavy-bottomed frying pan.
  2. Add the oats to the pan and stir constantly until they are toasted. Once the oats are toasted, remove them from the pan and allow to cool.
  3. Crush raspberries using a fork or food processor. Add the whisky to the double cream and whisk until it is stiff.
  4. Fold the honey and toasted oats through the cream.
  5. Use either a large glass trifle bowl or individual serving glasses.
  6. Start by placing a layer of cream in the base, followed by a layer of raspberries, then top with another layer of cream.
  7. If desired, swirl a little honey on top.

Visit The Bottle Club at thebottleclub.com for more information. 

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