'Scotland' on Serious Eats

The Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championship in Scotland

A spurtle. [Photograph: etsy.com] Of all the thingamajigs floating around in drawers, the spurtle might be the coolest. The wooden stick is something of a magic wand for porridge—it's engineered to prevent the lumping and congealing of mushy hot cereals. On October 11, expert porridge makers from far and wide will compete for the coveted golden spurtle trophy at the sixteenth annual Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championship in Carrbridge, a village in the Scottish Highlands. This year, Matt Cox of Bob’s Red Mill—the first and only U.S. participant—will compete with his oatmeal brûlée topped with pears, cherries, hazelnuts and distilled spirits, stirred with a custom-made Myrtle spurtle (naturally). Part of me still wants a spurtle to be an... More

Snapshots from Scotland: Deep-Fried Mars Bars

"After a few minutes, I was handed what looked like a single frozen fish stick on a plate." I had heard about the art of candy bar-frying for a long time and I didn't explore it for all sorts of reasons. Was fear one of them? Yes. And the bizarreness of it all too. So, I toughened up and headed to the Carron Fish Bar in Stonehaven, Scotland, the birthplace of the deep-fried Mars Bar. What was I afraid of? Yes, they must be really fattening, but lots of other foods are too and most of them tend not to scare me. And it was the sort of folk food I normally would revel in. I mean, it wasn't fugu.... More

'Olive Boyle': A Portrait of Susan Boyle in Pizza

scotsman.com Oh, boy. The Scotsman reports on a stunt cooked up by Liverpool bakery chain Sayers. The "Olive Boyle" pizza, a portrait of Britain's Got Talent singing sensation Susan Boyle, was created as a way to promote the company's new line of pizza. Large black olives were used for the frizzy hair, ham for the nose and bread dough balls for the necklace. For the next round of BGT, Boyle should sing a Janis Joplin adaptation: "A Little Pizza My Heart."... More

World's Tallest Stack of Pancakes

The Daily Mail Happy National Pancake Day! How 'bout this: Sean McGinlay and Natalie King of Glasgow's Hilton Grosvenor hotel measured their pancake tower at 29.5 inches (75cm)—beating the current title by 0.4 inches.The chefs mixed about 100 eggs, more than 17 pints of milk, 11 pounds of flour and 6.6 pounds of butter for the challenge, a hotel spokeswoman said. It yielded 672 pancakes, the stack of which took 22 hours to build.... More

A Guide to Edinburgh Eats

Gridskipper's Amanda Kludt just put together a short guide to eating around Edinburgh: nine restaurants ranging from an affordable Chinese restaurant frequented by students to a medieval chic restaurant where celebs go to be seen. I think my favorite thing about the list is how straight-forward so many of the names are—you've got your Chinese Home Cooking, Mosque Kitchen (a kitchen attached to a, you guessed it, mosque), The Mussel Inn, and the name that kills me every time I read it: Number One Restaurant. I mean, come on, Number One Restaurant! It's hilarious. The place has two Michelin stars, so at least it can't be accused of false advertising.... More

Goldpizza: The World's Most Expensive Pie?

A Scottish chef has made what might be the world's most expensive pizza: The pizza is sprinkled with gold and topped with champagne-soaked caviar and lobster marinated in the finest cognac. Creator Domenico Crolla [right] said it was worth more than $3,700. Mr. Crolla is tying the pie in to the upcoming James Bond movie by calling it the "Pizza Royale 007" (" 'If any pizza was made to suit 007, this is it,' said Mr Crolla.") and will auction it off on eBay to raise money for a charity, the Fred Hollows Foundation, "which works to prevent curable blindness in... More

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