One of the other dishes that we made for Burn’s Night was Scotch eggs. I’m not sure how they got the name Scotch eggs because everything I found online says that they were invented at Fortnum & Mason, a very up market grocery/department store in London in 1738. Scotch eggs are a popular picnic or snack food in England, served cold and are commonly found in supermarkets. The consist of an egg, wrapped in seasoned sausage meat, which is then coated in breadcrumbs and deep fried.
Because we were planning to serve them as an appetizer we decided to make miniature Scotch eggs using quails eggs. You can find quails eggs at North Market Poultry and Game (currently $3 for 10). Quail eggs are about an inch tall and I love the fact that their markings vary so much. They make adorable fried eggs and are perfect to use for hors d’oeuvres as they are bite size. They are however fiddly to peel so it’s better to buy more than you need. AD did most of the work for the Scotch eggs and I definitely heard some swearing during the peeling phase.
We followed Heston Blumenthall’s recipe, which had a lot of useful tips. The only thing it didn’t tell us was the cooking temperature. We found that the eggs took longer to hard boil than he said and also longer to fully cook at the end. The eggs are boiled and peeled and cooled, then encased in sausage meat. The sausage meat could/should have been thinner but it was hard to work with. Then they are dipped in flour, egg and bread crumbs. I made bread crumbs from a white sandwich loaf and then dried them in the oven.
We started with 30 quails eggs and 2 lbs of sausage meat and ended up with 22 scotch eggs. Here they are pre-frying.
And here they are having been deep fried and then baked in the oven to make sure that the sausage meat was cooked all the way through.
Other food at the Burns Night Supper was Cock-a-leekie soup, eel pie, Scottish salmon served with oat cakes, haggis, neeps and tatties (mashed potato and mashed rutabaga) and for dessert shortbread and whisky and honey ice cream.
The soup was topped with prunes, which are apparently traditional to cock-a-leekie soup. I was a little skeptical but they were a wonderful addition.
January 27, 2010
I sampled the Scotch Egg – it was excellent!
January 29, 2010
By adding a bit of cold water to the sausage, it becomes more pliable and less sticky. The haggis looks awesome by the way.
January 31, 2010
The Hairy Bikers (I think) said that the origin of Scotch is from the verb ‘to scotch’ meaning ….wish I could remember! I’ll get back to you if I find out before you do.
September 29, 2010
Some tricks are to work in small, cold batches, with wet hands. Would love to share grandmother recipes with you for roasted chicken with oatmeal sage stuffing. BTW I’m a butcher at Bluescreek farm, and that’s my family recipe I posted. The origins for scotch eggs come from our people being notoriously frugal. A pound of sausage and a half dozen eggs can feed a crowd. Pub grub just speaks to the masses What’s not to love! G.