The Aboyne Games and foraging for dinner

Yesterday we went to the Aboyne Highland Games and Elizabeth competed in the highland dance. It’s the first time we’ve been to the Aboyne games and the first time it has run since before the pandemic.

Elizabeth came last or second last in her dances. The other girls were quite a lot better and I’m so proud of her because not everyone is a good loser and she was very dignified, smiling and clapping the winners. There were only 6 competitors in her age group and the top four were singled out. The other girl who missed out was visibly upset and stormed off in tears but Elizabeth stood her ground and was very gracious about it. I felt bad because I hadn’t done up her vest properly and there was even a competition for the best outfit as this was the 70th anniversary of the Aboyne dress which is the one she’s wearing below. Her vest was not flush in the middle because the cord had come undone at the bottom which is my fault. I felt terrible about that.

Aside from highland dance there were caber tossing, a tug of war, running races and heavy stone throwing. They even had vomit-inducing rides: the kind of rides I would have enjoyed as a teenager but they look truly awful as a 40-something.

The Newtonhill Pipe Band did a lap of the field and played splendidly. I took a video.

We stayed in Aboyne overnight and went for a nice walk in the forest this morning.

Tonight we’re home and I’m making my signature bean and mashed potato dish. Daniel really loves it and it’s so easy to make. Tonight I’ve gone foraging and have added some nettles to it.

Since we gave up salt we’ve come to rely much more on herbs and I picked sage, rosemary, chives, and parsley from the garden for our dinner. The chives and parsley go in the mashed potato while the sage and rosemary go in the bean dish which is made from onion, garlic, cherry tomatoes from the garden, nettles from the garden, kale from the garden, chick peas, cannellini beans, apple cider vinegar, pepper and any other vegetables you want to put in. Frozen peas work well in it too. This is a very cheap and nutritious dish especially if you can forage for the herbs.

8 thoughts on “The Aboyne Games and foraging for dinner”

  1. That’s really brave of Elizabeth, it always stings not to be among the top, but it really is the taking part and doing your best that counts, that shows more respect for the activity you are taking part in and its traditions and history.
    I have almost given up eating meat because it is so expensive and there are so many healthy and tasty alternatives out there and your dish sounds like one of them.

    1. Yes, I agree. It’s not really about the competition for her. She likes the dancing and performing more. And great news about giving up meat! It is a lot cheaper to follow a plant-based diet as long as you’re avoiding all the processed plant foods and using fresh vegetables.

  2. Glad to read that your daughter wasn’t upset. It is nice to win, but one should always remember that dancing, doing sports etc. should be fun in the first place. Lovely dress, by the way.

    I am very low on salt too, and I use lots of herb and spices. Now is basil time =)

    1. Exactly! And for her it is about the dancing and performing rather than the competition. She just enjoys it for its own sake.

      Low salt diets are the best. We eat far too much salt and it does terrible things to our body. Enjoy the basil.

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