Scotland’s chefs get ready for Christmas

SCOTTISH chefs have been preparing for Christmas in a wide variety of ways.

Gary Maclean, Scotland’s first national chef, has been supporting charity Mary’s Meals’ “Big Family Christmas” fundraising scheme.

For £15.90 – enough to feed a child with Mary’s Meals for a whole school year – donors will receive a certificate to print at home and their name, or the name of a loved one, will appear on the charity’s virtual dinner table.

More than 46,000 people from around the world have taken part in the “Big Family Christmas” since it launched in 2015.

Chefs at Gleneagles

Gleneagles’ executive pastry chef, Phill Skinazi, and his team spent five days making a chocolate nutcracker that stands five feet and seven inches tall.

Displayed in the Perthshire hotel’s foyer during the festive season, the nutcracker is free-standing, supported by just two small wooden dowels at its base.

The 123kg model is dressed in Gleneagles’ traditional green uniform and is “built around a 40kg chocolate slab for structural balance”.

After Christmas, the chocolate centre will be used to make brownies and chocolate favours.

Chefs - Hibs airfryer Christmas dinner

Hibs football club has also been getting ready for Christmas, with its Hibernian Community Foundation teaming up with shirt sponsor Utilita to treat 500 people in Leith to a Christmas dinner.

They also joined forces with Iceland and its Food Warehouse brand for the “Shop Smart, Cook Savvy” campaign, including “an air-fryer friendly Christmas dinner for four people for under £20”.

Bryan Keenan, Hibs’ head chef, said: “Christmas dinner should be the best meal of the year, and we’ve proven that it doesn’t need to break the bank.

“We hope this campaign helps households to really understand the huge savings we can make by thinking differently about how we cook at home – air fryers and microwaves are used by some of the best chefs in the world, and every time we use them, we are saving the pocket and the planet.”

Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s food and drink pages, in association with Cask & Still magazine.

Plus, don’t miss Blair Bowman’s whisky column in the January issue of Scottish Field magazine.