A Recipe for Burns Night

A plate of haggis, neeps and tatties and a glass of whisky on a tartan tablecloth.

Burns Night celebrates the birthday of Scotland's national bard, Robert Burns, on 25th January every year.

The first Burns Supper was held in 1801, when a group of Robert Burns’ friends met to mark the fifth anniversary of the poet’s death. They dined on haggis and gave performances of the poet's works.

Follow our recipe of the traditional dish of haggis, neeps (mashed turnips) and tatties (mashed potatoes) from The Royal Yacht Britannia and Fingal's Executive Head Chef, Mark Alston, to create your own Burns Supper at home.

Haggis, Neeps, Tatties

Serves 4


3 medium-sized Maris Piper or King Edward potatoes
2 medium sized turnips
120g butter
60ml double cream



  • Keep the haggis in the skin.
  • Wrap in tin foil fairly tightly.
  • Bring a suitably sized pot of water to a gentle boil.
  • Place the wrapped haggis in the boiling water.
  • Heat through for around 45-60 minutes, depending on the size of the haggis.
  • While the haggis is heating, the mash and turnip can be prepared.


  • Peel and dice the potatoes, ensuring the dice are evenly sized to allow for even cooking.
  • Cover the potatoes with cold water, season well with salt and bring to a gentle boil.
  • Meanwhile measure 60ml of double cream and 70g of butter, place together in a pan and bring to a simmer together. Remove from the heat, set aside and keep warm.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked through, drain the water and return the drained potatoes back to the pot.
  • Place on a low heat occasionally shaking the pot, this allows excess steam and moisture to escape, allowing the potatoes to dry.
  • They should have a white, fluffy and dry appearance.
  • Once the potatoes are dry, push them through a metal sieve into another pot in batches. This will result in a smoother mash than using a traditional potato masher.
  • After all the potatoes are pushed through, return to a low heat, adding the cream and butter mixture, a little at a time, mixing with a spatula as you go.
  • Finally season to taste.
  • This can be set aside and re-heated when needed.


  • Peel and dice the turnips evenly.
  • Cover with cold water, season well with salt and bring to a gentle boil.
  • Meanwhile, melt the remaining 50g of butter.
  • Once soft and cooked through, drain and dry in the same fashion as the potatoes.
  • The turnips can also be pushed through a sieve in the same way as the potatoes, or mashed using a potato masher.
  • With the mashed turnips in a pot and on a low heat, add the melted butter and mix into the turnips.
  • Season to taste.
  • As with the mashed potatoes, the turnips can be set aside and re-heated when needed.

After the haggis is heated thoroughly, carefully remove the skin, whilst gently warming the potatoes and turnips.

Once everything is hot, you are ready to serve and enjoy with a wee dram!

For your own Scottish event on board Britannia, see our Events section here