Sorry for the late post dear reader but I’ve been busy moving myself, Jamie and my vast collection of cook books into our new home. I had fifteen boxes of cookbooks, FIFTEEN! Ridiculous. I felt very sorry for Jamie’s dad Billy, who heroically carried them up two flights of stairs (apologies Billy), I clearly have a problem.
Anyway, let’s talk veggie Scotch eggs. I’ve been a bit obsessed with them ever since I tried my first one in the The Southampton Arms last month. However, this is not the first time I’ve tried to make them. My first attempt was a bit of a fail back in 2015. Although tasty, they resembled mushroom burgers, far too flat to be considered a Scotch egg. So, two years later and with a picnic on the horizon, it was time for round two. Using a mixture of chickpeas, breadcrumbs and cannellini beans, I finally managed to get the right texture to mould around my boiled eggs to form the perfect Scotch egg (#winningatlife). Unlike a regular Scotch egg however, I opted for baking not frying, not only to keep the calories down (as you all know, I’ve been on a diet for about 100 million years) but because I don’t trust myself to deep fat fry anything, far to scary. I mean I don’t even own a microwave, let alone a deep fat fryer, although my mum did once, my dad bought her one for Christmas. Not cool dad, not cool.
Anyway, if you fancy a bit of challenge and want to impress your friends at that picnic then be brave and give these a go, you won’t regret it.
Baked scotch eggs
Makes 6 / Hands on time 55 / Total time 1 hr 15 mins + cooling / V Df
You will need: Hand blender and a food processor (if making your own breadcrumbs)
6 eggs medium
1 red onion, finely chopped
3 big garlic cloves, crushed
1 medium carrot, grated
2 tsp smoked paprika
Half tsp chilli flakes
1 can soft chickpeas, rinsed and drained (try and get the big juicy chickpeas if you can, I use Napolina)
1tsp olive oil
1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
Flour for dusting
100g breadcrumbs (roughly 3 slices of brown bread blitzed)
20g panko breadcrumbs
Serve with English mustard (optional)
1. Preheat an oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400F/Gas mark 6. Place the eggs in a small pan and cover with boiling water. Simmer for 7 minutes. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with cold water and add some ice. After 7 minutes, remove the eggs and place carefully into the water bath. Leave to cool.
2. In a large cooking pot, add the chopped onions, garlic and grated carrot with 1 teaspoon of oil. Cook on a medium heat with the lid on until softened. After 5 minutes, add a dash of water to help them steam for a further 5 minutes. Add half a teaspoon of chilli flakes and 2 teaspoons of smoked paprika and cook for another 2 minutes before adding the drained cannellini and chickpeas. Season well with salt and pepper and give it a good stir. Turn down the heat and cook with the lid on for a further 10 minutes. By now your eggs should be cold enough to carefully peel. Peel all the eggs and put to one side.
3. To make your breadcrumbs, simply tear a few slices of brown bread (or any bread you have) into rough chunks and blitz in a food processor. Alternatively, use 100g of shop bought breadcrumbs. Put on a large plate and cover with 20g of pako breadcrumbs (optional), season with salt and pepper and mix together roughly with your hands. Put to one side
4. Turn the heat off under the bean mixture and blend in a food processor or hand blender until you have a smooth paste. Once blended, add 2 handfuls of breadcrumbs and mix together using a spoon. Put to one side to cool slightly.
5. Now here comes the fun bit. Next to your peeled eggs, put a small bowl filled with 100g of plain flour and next to that, your plate of bread crumbs. Tear off a sheet of cling film and place on the tabletop in front of you. Roughly take out about a 6th of the bean mixture and place it in the centre of your clingfilm. Using the back of a wooden spoon or your hands pat it down until you have a round-ish disk.
6. Take one of your eggs, roll it in the flour and then place in the middle of your bean mixture. Gather up the edges of the clingfilm and start to squish the beans around the egg until the egg is entirely encased by the mixture (this is easier than it sounds). If you find you haven’t taken enough mixture then just add a bit more on top.
7. Once the egg is encased, carefully remove the clingfilm and using your hands, mould into a ball. Roll in the breadcrumbs until evenly covered and place on a baking tray sprayed with oil. Repeat this process 6 times. Finally, spray the scotch eggs with spray oil and cook in the oven for 20 minutes, turning and spraying with oil halfway through.Remove from the oven and leave to cool on the baking trays. Once cool, refrigerate until ready to serve with a dollop of English mustard. Don’t mind if I do.
If you’ve had a go at making my Scotch eggs or any of my other recipes, I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale firstname.lastname@example.org