The Bon Bon Cake Shop has pulled off a notable double at the 2006 World Scotch Pie Championship, writes Ian Martin. During last week’s prize-giving ceremony at Dunfermline’s Lauder College, the Airdrie-based business was not only named World Scotch Pie Champion for 2006, but also picked up the top award in the bridie section.

Founded in the late 1960s and employing just 14 people, the Bon Bon Cake Shop normally produces up to 30 dozen Scotch pies on a weekday and nearer 40 dozen at the weekend. But according to owner Robert Cowan, demand grew 50% on the day after the awards ceremony, as news of the triumph began to filter into the local media.

Mr Cowan insists that production of the hand-made pies represents “a collective effort” within the business. The standard shop recipe entered for the World Scotch Pie Championship comprises “good-quality Scotch beef” in “a thin and quite crisp pastry shell”, explained Mr Cowan. “We spice the pies to the taste of locals here in Airdrie,” he added.

All the pies produced in the bakery are sold through the adjoining shop, thereby guaranteeing freshness, he said.

This year’s World Scotch Pie Championship attracted 248 product entries from 60 companies. “The overall standard just gets better every year,” observed competition founder Alan Stuart of Stuarts of Buckhaven. “The event has become established

in the food calendar and the trade looks forward to it.”

Mr Stuart drew particular attention to the high level of innovation within the speciality section of the competition, which was won this year by F Ballard Butchers of Castle Douglas for its Lamb rosti pie.

Having scooped four awards at last year’s event, Nevis Bakers of Fort William picked up a further five at the latest ceremony, including a bronze for its Scotch pie, golds for its bridie and beef stroganoff pie, and silvers for its Hotchpotch pie and Orkney beef pie.