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SCOTLAND Each wood-smoked herring that comes out of Jaffy’s Smokehouse is a succulent triumph over modern electric smoking ovens

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Lawrie & Sons is a great example of a business that knows what it does best and sticks to it. Since 1944, the smokehouse in the coastal village of Mallaig, Inverness-shire, has been a custodian of the dying art of traditional fish smoking, and in all that time, neither the cures nor the smoking techniques have changed. “The secret is maintaining high standards, sticking to the traditional cures and processes, and never compromising on the time taken to smoke,” says fourth With growing generation owner Jeff interest in eating Lawrie. The grandson of more naturally the company’s original and healthily, founder George Lawrie, people are or ‘Jaffy’, Jeff takes returning to the steward-ship of his grandfather’s trade very kippers seriously. The business is currently being rebranded with the aim of promoting its family values and heritage. “We want to show how committed we are to the traditional processes that set our products apart,” says Jeff. Hot and cold smoked salmon and kippers are the products that keep smoke billowing from the chimney of the 30ft brick smokehouse. “They are what we do best – simple products we’ve been making since the 1940s that are always well-received,” says Jeff. That is a modest understatement from a producer that has become one of the most prolific Great Taste award winners. As well as racking up numerous gold stars, Jaffy’s kippers are three times winners of the coveted Golden Fork from Scotland. But even with such an impressive collection of accolades, Jeff still reacted to the news of this year’s Golden Fork as though it were the first. “I was completely delighted,” he says. “It is an honour that such a large number

of judges consider our product to be at that level. People recognise the Great Taste logo on our product and it generates interest from all over the UK and beyond.” And it’s not just older generations who eat kippers for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Jeff says the Omega-3 rich fish are attracting a new breed of health-conscious consumers. “With growing interest in eating more naturally and healthily, people are returning to kippers,” he says. “I’ve never met anyone

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who has tried one of our kippers and not enjoyed it. People are always pleasantly surprised by the delicate taste and the depth of flavour.” www.jaffys.co.uk

How to use: lightly poach with a knob of butter and serve with parsley and brown bread www.greattasteawards.co.uk

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Great Taste Book 2016-17