By Esther Boateng
Are you foot-loose and fancy-free when it comes to cooking up a storm in the kitchen? Do you like to create your own masterpieces with tried and tested recipes? If so, you might relish this slightly healthier version of traditional Scotch eggs.
Scotch eggs were invented by Fortnum & Mason, an old-fashioned department store established in 1707 in the UK. This surprisingly simple yet delicious recipe has two main ingredients: eggs and pork sausage meat. It makes perfect picnic food, travels well, and can be eaten hot or cold.
You can either buy ground pork at a local butcher or buy a package of your favorite pork sausages and remove the skin, which is what I did with a package of Breakfast Pork Sausages. If you buy ground pork, you might need to add additional seasoning, such as finely chopped onions and garlic. Store bought sausages are usually seasoned, so it’s best to err on the side of caution when adding your own seasoning, like salt for example. One sausage should be enough pork meat to cover one egg.
Instead of coating the eggs in regular breadcrumbs, I use a combination of raw hemp seeds, gently toasted pine nuts, and sprouted buckwheat. I usually sprout my own buckwheat, but it’s possible to buy it if you don’t want the extra job of dehydrating your own food.
I put a cup of buckwheat in a bowl and cover it with about 2 - 3 cups of water, and let it sit overnight. In the morning, I rinse and drain it, then place it in the dehydrator for several hours until it completely dries and becomes crunchy. When it’s fully dehydrated, you should be able to crush it in between your fingers like sawdust.
If you’re not a fan of the nuts and seed blend, feel free to use regular breadcrumbs. The alternative coating looks more rustic, has plenty of flavor, and a good dose of additional nutrients.
- Boil eggs for 7- 10 minutes and set aside to cool.
- Heat the frying pan to a medium-hot temperature and toast the pine nuts for 3-4 minutes until golden brown. Keep shuffling the pan to get an even color. Set aside to cool.
- Use a spice/coffee grinder to grind the sprouted buckwheat, pine nuts and hemp seeds until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Transfer half of this mixture into a Ziploc bag and save for later.
- Put the sausage meat and the rest of the nuts and seeds blend in a bowl, and combine the mixture together with a fork or your hands.
- Divide the meat into equal size balls. Flatten the balls, and carefully mold around each egg. Make sure the egg is completely covered.
- Coat the eggs with the nuts and seeds mixture. Place the egg in the Ziploc bag you prepared earlier and shake until the egg is evenly coated.
- When each egg is sufficiently coated, place on a baking tray and cook for about 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees until the meat is no longer pink, and cooked throughout. Serve and enjoy.
If you want almost perfectly round balls, before you coat the egg, toss them in a lightly heated frying ban with a small amount of butter or oil and swirl around in the pan until they look even in shape. The butter also helps the nuts and seeds mixture to stick to the sausage meat/egg. Alternatively, dip the Scotch egg in beaten egg before coating. Either way will work.