Cullen Skink

Cullen Skink

Cullen is a small town in Northeast Scotland and the home of one of Scotland’s most famous dishes, Cullen Skink. It is a hardy soup and traditionally made with Finnan haddock (smoked haddock), potatoes, and leeks. It may be served with nice and thick buttered toasts as a main dish. My very special thanks to Ferdinand, Catherine’s nephew, who brought the recipe back from Scotland last summer.

Cullen Skink

14 January 2021
: Serves 4 to 5
: 15 min
: 30 min
: 45 min
: Easy

This recipe serves 3 to 4 persons as a main dish. As a starter, it will easily serve up to 6 people. If you do not have stock, just add water and season the milk with laurel leaves and a bit of thyme, it works as well.


  • 450 g haddock
  • 500 ml of milk
  • 250 g potatoes
  • 2 leeks sliced
  • 45 g butter
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 3 TBS double cream
  • A small bunch of chopped parsley
  • 200 ml vegetable stock if you have any
  • Pepper from the mill
  • Step 1 Place the smoked haddock, skin up, in a large pan and cover with all the milk. Cook on lowest heat for 2-3 minutes after the boiling point until just tender.
  • Step 2 Remove the haddock from the milk with a slotted spoon (leaving the milk in the pan), transfer to a plate and leave it to cool slightly.
  • Step 3 Cut the peeled potatoes roughly in quarters. Finely slice the leeks, melt the butter in a large saucepan and sauté both vegetables together stirring regularly for about 10 minutes. Add the stock and the reserved milk and cook gently. When the potatoes are done, add the haddock bit by bit making sure there are no bones or skin. Add the pepper, the sour cream and the parsley. The lemon juice will be set on the table as an option. It’s ready.

1 thought on “Cullen Skink”

  • This recipe was a real success every time I made it!
    I like to add a handful of chopped celery sticks which match perfectly with the leeks and potatoes.
    A few coriander seeds are a good savoury surprise too.
    For a festive dinner party, you may add a glass of white wine to the broth, and a few small scallops will upgrade the soup especially when served as a main dish.

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