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Features - Microwave Clootie Dumpling

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Clootie Well, Munclochy

Wells were very important to our fore-bears and there grew up the belief, from the earliest of time, that certain wells had healing properties. St Columba blessed the sacred wells of the older religions and declared them holy as the change to Christianity did nothing to affect people’s belief in the healing powers of water drawn from these wells. After the Reformation the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland tried to stamp out the practice by fining anyone who was found visiting a well, But Scots continued to use the wells in the traditional way, tying cloths onto trees at clootie wells, drinking three sips of the water and walking three times deasil around the well to bring luck.

Clootie wells, from the Scots word clout for cloth, still exist. The good people of Inverness have the choice of two nearby wells! One on Culloden Moor, which it is said is visited by the ghosts of dead Highlanders, and another at Munlochy on the Black Isle. By all means visit a clootie well and hang a rag on a tree in the hope that it will cure an ailment but remember never remove someone else’s clout or their trouble could be passed to you!

The obvious recipe inspired by clootie wells is Clootie Dumpling. Regular visitors will know that a traditional recipe for Clootie Dumpling is already up on site but thanks to John Anderson and Electric Scotland we can go all hi-tech this week and give you a recipe for Microwave Clootie Dumpling.  

Microwave Clootie Dumpling

Stage One
˝ pint cold water
4 oz sugar
1 heaped tablespoon Cinnamon
1 heaped tablespoon Mixed Spice
8 oz Margarine
8 oz Sultanas
8 oz Raisins
1 tablespoon Treacle (optional)

Put all the above ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil, simmer for five minutes

Stage Two

8 oz plain flour
1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda
2 beaten eggs

Add the hot mixture to the flour and bicarbonate of soda, when well mixed add the two beaten eggs and mix well

Pour the mixture into a cling film lined bowl and cook in the microwave for:-

650 Watt - 9 minutes
500 Watt - 12 minutes

Leave in the bowl to cool and firm up then turn out onto a wire rack or plate.

Recipe provided by John Archibald

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