25 January in Scotland is Burns Night: a day to celebrate the work of Scottish poet Robert Burns. People don tartan, recite Burns poetry (in Scots no less), and dine on a traditional meal of haggis, neeps (mashed turnips), and tatties (mashed potato). Across the country, local Burns Suppers are held, all culminating in a ceilidh.
While we didn’t have haggis for our actual Burns Supper this past Monday, we did have Rumbledethumps, a traditional Scottish dish originating from the Scottish Borders, close to England. Aside from being delicious, Rumbledethumps is a marriage of root and cruciferous vegetables, as well as tubers, all grown in Scotland. Typically, it contains potatoes and boiled cabbage, but this is a recipe of variables: you could also add sweet potato, squash, pumpkin, turnip, or even parsnip to the mash. My recipe adds carrots. You can add your preferred cheese too.
I also wanted to make Rumbledethumps because they’re PurposeFUEL: they’re food that serves an actual purpose. I once said to someone that everything I eat, I eat for a reason: for vitamin and mineral intake, for muscle fuel, for muscle repair, to give me lasting energy. Food is my fuel, and my fuel must serve a purpose. In the case of Rumbledethumps, they are muscle fuel used for long runs, hill runs or races. Or, they’re a delicious part of your recovery meal post longer, more intense run, or race. Remember the term ‘PurposeFUEL’ because I’m going somewhere with it.
Now, the recipe below is primal: meaning it’s paleo + cheese. I’ve used Auld Reekie, a smoky-flavoured cheese made by the Cambus O’May Cheese Company, close to Ballater. I like the Cambus O’May cheeses because they’re named after places Pat and/or I have run or cycled (Lochnagar and Lairig Ghru), and because they’re made with unpasteurised milk, making them totally primal. They’re also delicious strong cheeses, which are served best with sliced apple and roasted pecans. By the way, for the non-Scottish readers, Auld Reekie is Edinburgh’s nickname.
Some people can’t tolerate dairy, or choose not to eat it, so I’ve put in cheese substitute just in case: nutritional yeast. While this fortified-with-vitamin-B12, vegan favourite won’t have the gooey texture of melted cheese, it does give a savoury, cheesy taste to meals. Nutritional yeast is considered paleo and primal, and you can read more about it on Marks Daily Apple.
If following the recipe below as is, this dish is primal. If you omit the cheese and butter, and add ghee and nutritional yeast instead, it is paleo and Whole 30 compliant. And of course, vegetarian and vegan too.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
4 medium potatoes
2 medium carrots
2 handfuls of kale
1 clove of garlic
25-50g + 1 tbsp butter or ghee
75g grated hard cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Cheese substitution: 10-25g of Nutritional yeast
1.Preheat oven to 180’C or 350’F.
2. Blanch the kale: In a sauce pan, bring to boil about 500mL water. Add the kale to this, and cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat, drain the water, then run cold water over top to stop it from cooking more. Set aside.
3. Peel and chop the potatoes and carrots; make sure the carrots are cut in smaller pieces to allow them to cook through in the same time as the potatoes.
4. Boil the potatoes and carrots in lightly salted water until soft. Drain, then return to the pot.
5. Add your 25-50g of butter or ghee to the potatoes and carrots; season lightly with salt and pepper. Mash this mixture until smooth.
6. In a frying pan, melt the 1 tbsp of butter at medium low heat. Peel and chop the garlic, adding it to the butter. Allow to cook for about three minutes, then add the kale to this; season lightly with salt and pepper. Mix well to make sure the kale is coated with butter.
7. Add the kale to the mash mix, and stir well. Transfer to an oven proof dish.
8. Grate your cheese, then top your mash mixture. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is fully melted and bubbly.
With nutritional yeast instead: add to the mash mixture and stir well. You can then just serve the mash as is, or transfer to a dish, top with 1 tbsp ghee and bake for 20 minutes.
Serve with a protein and veg of your choice.
We’ve got a Burns Supper tomorrow night in our village hall, and yes I will have the not-strict-paleo haggis.
What foods do you eat to fuel your muscles?