Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Say aye tae a football pie

Pies are close to my heart.

So close in fact that I've fallen under the tyranny of healthy eating fascism to protect said heart.

But all things in moderation. So the treat of a Scotch pie has become a rare and beguiling pleasure.

One that I would ideally enjoy at the football.

Except I most often watch football at Easter Road where the culinary disappointments have continued this season even as results on the pitch have improved.

There was a spell when the Hibs pie came incinerated. Now it's a pale flabby mass that collapses on itself after one bite.

You're left staring reproachfully at an almost inedible mass of limp pastry and insipid meat that's vaguely reminiscent of what George Osborne must see in the bathroom mirror of a Sunday morning.

Get a drink to help choke it down and you'll not get much change from a fiver. The fan experience as imagined by a miserly sadist. Or maybe George Osborne again.

It needn't be like this. In a pre-season trip to East Fife I was treated not only to a Tim Clancy wonder goal (of sorts) but also a choice of pies from the excellent Puddledub farm shop of Auchtertool.

And help might be at hand from the wonderful sounding Scotch Pie Club.

A club that Groucho Marx might have joined even if they wanted him as a member.

Who better than the members of a club devoted to the Scotch pie to organise a Scotch pie competition?

So it is that the Scotch Pie Club will host the 14th World Scotch Pie Championship in Dunfermline this November.

For the first time the judges will also be tickling their taste buds with entries from Scotland's football clubs as they launch a new category to find the Best Football Pie in Scotland.

Pie guru and competition founder, Alan Stuart, said:

"It gives me great pleasure to be recognising the role the football pie plays in our sporting heritage in this way and I am excited to see the entries, may the best club win."

There's actually a serious point here. Too often we put up with overpriced and substandard fare from our clubs, on the pitch and at the food kiosks.

So celebrating clubs that do pies as well is worthwhile. It's a small thing. But, I suppose, the small things add up to the overall fan experience that we too often ignore.

So, as the old slogan almost says, "say aye tae a (reasonably priced, tasty) pie.

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