Cullen Skink soup recipe

Cullen Skink recipe

This traditional Scottish soup is made by our chef Scott. He is based in Scotland and is the chef for our Scotland holidays. This Cullen Skink recipe has been made for our guests over the past couple of years, the soup recieved amazing feedback that we just had to share the recipe with you.

Follow these 11 simple steps to make your Cullen Skink soup. Pop over to our Instagram to view the video of Scott making Cullen Skink from this recipe.


  • 1 whole leek clean, separate green end from the white stem
  • 2 banana shallot / 4 – 6 small shallot
  • 2 fillets of pale smoked haddock
  • 300ml full milk
  • 300ml stock (fish/ chicken/ veg are all fine)
  • 300g peeled and cubed potato (maris piper or just white potato is fine)
  • 150g peeled and cubed celeriac (optional)
  • 100ml double cream (optional)
  • 50g butter


1 – If you have the chance, remove the middles (line of the spine) of the haddock fillets and add to the cold milk. You can skip this step entirely and just cut the haddock fillets into bite size pieces but an infusion with milk will add to the flavour.

2 – Dice the white of the leek and the shallot as finely as you can (if you are making a milk infusion add the root end of the leek and the root and skin of the shallot to the milk with the haddock middles)

3 – Gently sweat the shallot and leek until softened but ensure there is no browning at all. Keep the heat low and be patient, if you brown the veg you will discolour the final appearance of the soup. You want to retain the pure white, beautiful broth as much as possible.

4 – Now add the cubed potatoes (and celeriac if using), fold into the leek and shallot mix, and ensure the potato is incorporated and coated in the buttery veg.

5 – Cook out for a few minutes again making sure not to brown any of the veg *If using a milk infusion the key is to bring the milk and ingredients to the verge of a boil and then turn off. (You can leave this overnight or just for an hour, or indeed as long as you can. It will keep for a couple days just getting better. Overnight is the preference in the restaurant, realistically an hour at home is grand)

6 – Now add your milk (or milk infusion) and the stock. Bring the heat up to a simmer but do not allow it to boil. Be gentle and look after this broth.

7 – Allow to cook for 15 – 20 mins until the veg is just cooked. You don’t want mush, achieving the correct texture of your cooked veg will make this dish so much better.

8 – When you are happy with your veg, add the chopped green leeks and the haddock, and the double cream (optional). Stir through and combine all ingredients.

9 – Cover the pan with a lid or some foil if you don’t have one and remove from the heat. The residual heat in the broth will perfectly poach your fish and achieve the objective temperature of the veg.

10 – You can now leave this to cool completely (uncovered) and it will keep for 3 days in a fridge and you can reheat it when you need. Heat to a simmer but ensure the veg/fish is not catching on the bottom of your pan.

11 – When ready to serve, cut some lovely fresh sour dough and cube some butter then top the butter with good quality (maldon) flaked sea salt. Add a pea shoot or two if you feel fancy but there’s really no need.

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Flavours Blog

Food, Recipes, Lifestyle and Travel blog – by the Flavours Holidays team.