Home » Book Review: A Taste of the Highlands – by Ghillie Basan

Book Review: A Taste of the Highlands – by Ghillie Basan

5. Lochinver Larder Venison and Cranberry Pie (1)

Revitilize your tastebuds on a culinary trip through the Highlands of Scotland

This delightful book gives the reader an opportunity to dip into the flavours and food of Scotland. We are all encouraged to learn about the provenance of our food and this book highlights some of the best local produce on offer.

The author takes you on a wonderful journey through the wild glens of the Cairngorms, the bountiful waters of the Moray Firth and the vibrant farmland of the Black Isle. Not forgetting the moody sea lochs, moors and mountains of Sutherland and Argyll, Ghille shares with the reader some of the best food produced in this spectacular area of Scotland – lamb, grass-fed beef, wild venison, fresh salmon, and juicy langoustines, seasonal fruits and berries, local cheeses and charcuterie, butter, bread, as well as whisky, gin, beer and much much more


Check out some of the iconic produce from the pictures extracted from ‘A Taste of the Highlands’ – in particular the heart-warming venison dishes. This well-flavoured meat is ideal to use in pies, casseroles, or served as a sharing plate, with wonderful recipes such as:
Lochinver Larder Venison and Cranberry Pie, and

5. Lochinver Larder Venison and Cranberry Pie (1)
Lochinver Larder Venison and Cranberry Pie – Birlinn

Venison Carpaccio with garlic and wood sorrel

Venison Carpaccio with garlic and wood sorrel
Venison Carpaccio with garlic and wood sorrel – Birlinn

Read my own favourite venison recipe as an alternative to a traditional Christmas fayre.

venison casserole
Credit Maureen Clark

Rich Venison and Juniper Berry Casserole
Serves 6
1 large brown onion, chopped finely
4 rashers lean back bacon, chopped
1kg venison, without bone, chopped into chunks
10 juniper berries, crushed
3 sprigs of rosemary (stem removed and chopped)
Juice and zest from 2 large oranges
200g chestnuts (fresh or preserved)
Freshly-ground black pepper
Maldon sea salt

2cm ginger root, peeled and sliced finely
1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
10 juniper berries, crushed
Tsp freshly-ground black pepper
Tsp Maldon sea salt
Tsp coriander seeds, crushed
300ml robust red wine
Tsp white wine vinegar

Prepare marinade
Combine the venison chunks and marinade in a glass bowl. Cover the bowl and leave to marinate overnight in the fridge for 6-8 hours (if possible)
Now prepare basic ingredients
Melt the butter in a large frying pan
Saute onion and bacon on a medium heat for 10 minutes
Add the venison and marinade to the pan and sear quickly on high heat for 4-5 minutes
Add the juniper berries, orange juice and rosemary
Season to taste then simmer for a further 2 minutes
Transfer the ingredients to a slow cooker (check manufacturers settings)
Set at the lowest setting and cook for 2 hours
Stir in the chestnuts, check seasoning and cook for a further 10-15 minutes
Serve with sprigs of rosemary and orange zest.

A Taste of the Highlands by Ghillie Basan would make an ideal Christmas gift for anyone who wishes to be transported to one of the most spectacular scenic areas of Scotland, whilst learning about the delicious food and recipes this area has to offer.

A Taste of the Highlands is published by Birlinn and is available from all the usual book outlets.





Taste of the Highlands (1)
Credit Birlinn

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Foodie Lass
Foodie Lass

I am a passionate foodie with a background in advertising and more recently food author (with a range of successful health and nutrition books under my belt).

I spent several years living in Australia (experiencing food cultures from that part of the world) plus many food adventures in European countries.

My most recent food passion has been watching ‘Somebody feed Phil’ on Netflix!