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What is Cullen Skink

What is Cullen Skink? Is there any other dish so quintessentially Scottish and fishy? This thick, creamy soup is a Scottish classic, but for the uninitiated, what’s the fuss about?

What is Cullen Skink?

Cullen Skink bowl of soup

Cullen Skink originates from Cullen (hence the name), a small town in Moray in the Northeast of Scotland, just outside of Aberdeenshire. 

The word ‘Skink’ refers to shin, knuckle or hough of beef that would traditionally be used to make a broth. ‘Skink’ is a Scots word for this type of meat.

What is in it?

Instead of beef, this dish contains smoked haddock, potatoes and onions and either milk or cream. Authentic Cullen Skink will be made with Finnan Haddie (a cold-smoked haddock) but any undyed smoked haddock can be used. The result is a rich, creamy soup that is filling and best served with crusty bread to mop up the remainders in the bowl!

Is it a Chowder?

Cullen Skink soup in bowl

While Chowder-like in theory, being made with smoked fish gives this dish a much smokier taste than a typical seafood chowder.

Is it healthy?

It’s all down to interpretation! While the cream makes this a higher-fat dish, the smoked fish does mean this counts as one of your 2 recommended portions of seafood per week accordingly to NHS guidelines. There are many nutritional benefits to including fish such as smoked haddock in your regular diet.

How to Make It

Fancy giving this a try? Click to get the recipe!

Cullen Skink Soup in a bowl and garnished with parsely
Learn how to make Cullen Skink in the comfort of your own home

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