If there is one thing that is getting me through the middle-of-the night feeds with the baby at the moment, it’s TV. It happens to be the only time that I get to watch TV, uninterrupted, and something which is not Peppa Pig. Lately, I have been slowly making my way through some old episodes of a few popular reality cooking shows from Australia, such as MasterChef and My Kitchen Rules. I’m loving the current season of My Kitchen Rules, and I have my money on the “Gourmet Pommies”, Will and Steve.
One particular dish which whet my appetite was their Scotch Eggs with Herb Mayonnaise. My memory of Scotch eggs from my childhood are of hard-boiled eggs wrapped in sausage meat and crumbed, and which were often eaten cold on picnics, usually sliced thickly and wodged between slices of white bread.
When I saw this humble picnic fare recently on TV, I was intrigued by how it had been elevated technically into a somewhat complex and challenging dish. The eggs were boiled for only a few minutes so that the yolks remained soft-set, and the challenge was to then wrap these fragile eggs in sausage mince, to double-coat them in breadcrumbs before deep-frying them until golden, and to finish the cooking process in the oven, all the while ensuring that the yolks remained soft-set upon serving. The contestants went through (and wasted) about two dozen eggs before the eggs were ultimately “cooked to perfection” (a somewhat irritating phrase which has been repeated too often in this show this season), and were ultimately awarded a 9 out of 10 for their effort.
I have never had the inkling to make Scotch eggs at home. But one evening, I found myself looking at the contents of our fridge and thinking to myself, “I’ve got a carton of eggs. I’ve got a packet of pork sausages. Toddler is watching Peppa Pig and baby is sleeping in the sling. Rather than serve breakfast for dinner, let’s make Scotch eggs!”
Prepared for failure and frustration at attempting a fussy recipe with two young children at my side, I was utterly surprised that my first attempt ever at making Scotch eggs was a success. My husband, not used to seeing me in the kitchen these past few months, came home and asked me what we were celebrating.
The main challenge I found in this recipe was to peel the soft-boiled eggs without breaking them. The rest of the recipe is quite a doddle to follow, and there was much relief at the end of the deep-frying and baking time to find that the yolks were still soft and runny. Most of the flavour is in the sausage mixture, so it goes without saying that you should use good-quality pork sausages. I wanted a bit more freshness in my Scotch eggs, so I added some finely chopped parsely and sage to the sausage meat. I served the Scotch eggs with a leafy green salad and the herb mayonnaise from the recipe; the latter was quite lovely on its own, but I found that it didn’t go so well with the warm Scotch eggs. If anything, the sausage meat was crying out for a splodge of tomato sauce or ketchup.
All in all, these Scotch Eggs with Herb Mayonnaise were really delicious. I’m loving the inspiration that I am getting from these cooking shows, and I’m particularly loving being back in the kitchen again.
You can find the recipe here.
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