Chorizo Scotch Quail Eggs

2016-02-26 18.32.06

The same day that I decided to make my practice batch of Mini Sausage Rolls I thought it might be fun to make another picnic snack using up the remainder of the sausage-meat. It also helps that my husband is obsessed with Scotch Eggs and chorizo, and this is therefore something I’ve been promising to try making for a long time!

It felt a bit odd to get the deep fat fryer out from the garage and dust it off for use in my new sparkling kitchen. It’s not one of my regularly used kitchen appliances, not because I don’t like deep fried food, more because I like it a bit too much to get good at cooking it at home! I am pleased to say that these were well worth the effort and they were all eaten up before I had a chance to consider taking any to my work colleagues – much to their dismay!

This recipe made 11 scotch eggs, I’m sure it could have just about stretched to make the round dozen, but I messed up peeling the first quails egg as I’d under-done them all. But given how many requests I got for them afterwards I would say if you’ve got the time to peel 24 quails’ eggs it is worth doubling the recipe.

Ingredients

Chorizo scotch quail eggs
(adapted from a sainsbury’s magazine recipe)
  • 250g sausage-meat
  • 100g chorizo (I used Revilla Spanish chorizo)
  • 12 quail eggs
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  • Handful of fresh thyme
  • 100g plain flour
  • 1tsp paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 100g fine dried breadcrumbs
  • 2.5 litres vegetable oil for frying
Equipment
  • Deep fat fryer

Cooking steps

mise en place
(put in place – Prep work!)
  1. Finely chop the parsley and thyme.
  2. Dice the chorizo.
  3. Break the egg into a high sided plate and beat with a fork.
  4. Mix the flour and paprika in a high sided bowl and season generously with salt and pepper.
  5. Put the breadcrumbs in another high sided bowl.
  6. Get a bowl of ice cold water ready.
Quail eggs
  1. Bring a small pan of water to the boil. Once it’s boiling lower in the quail eggs using a slotted spoon. If you are doubling the recipe it’s worth boiling them in two batches.
  2. Boil t2016-02-26 16.33.57he eggs for two and a half minutes and then transfer them to the bowl of ice cold water to stop them cooking more.  Two and a half minutes should be enough so that they are soft boiled but you can still get the shell off. I messed this up the first time, I only boiled them for 2 minutes and then couldn’t remove the shell without damaging the egg. I therefore returned the rest to the boil for another minute, and in the end they were hard boiled not soft boiled, quail eggs are tricky things to get right!
  3. Once the eggs have cooled down in the water peel them. I did this by gently tapping them on the worktop until they cracked all over and then using a turning knife to help get under the membrane and peel the shell off being careful not to damage the egg. Do ensure you get all the membrane off as it’s pretty rubbery.

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Assembly
  1. In a large bowl combine the chorizo, sausage-meat, parsley and  thyme, season with salt and pepper. At this point you can fry off a small bit of the mixture to check the seasoning and adjust if necessary – remember you can always add but you can’t take away!
  2. Roll the eggs around in the seasoned flour to coat and then shake off any excess (Don’t throw away the rest of the flour as you’ll need it for step 3. Divide the sausage mixture into 12.2016-02-26 16.34.28
  3. One at a time, flatten each into a circle large enough to cover the egg. Put an egg in the middle and carefully form the sausage-meat around it. Seal the edges and roll around in your hands to even out. Put them in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to firm up (or chill in the fridge if you have made them ahead of time).
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  4. One at a time again roll them in the seasoned flour and then in the beaten egg, then the breadcrumbs. Put them back in the freezer for 10 minutes or the fridge for an hour or more.2016-02-26 17.22.572016-02-26 17.23.212016-02-26 17.22.36


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Cooking
  1. Put the vegetable oil in the deep fat fryer and heat it to 175°C. There should be enough oil to fully cover the eggs when placed in. Pre-heat the oven to 160°C fan.
  2. Once the oil has reached temperature lower in the scotch eggs using tongs and deep fry for 3 minutes. When you lower them in hold them in the oil for 5 seconds before letting them drop in, or they’ll stick to the basket. I would fry them 6 at a time max, or the temperature of the oil will drop too much. After the 3 minutes is up remove them using the tongs, move them onto a plate with some kitchen roll on it, to drain off some of the oil.2016-02-26 18.12.03 2016-02-26 18.14.44
  3. Give the oil enough time to return to temperature and then repeat step 2 with the remaining 6 eggs, then remove them and allow them to drain for 5 minutes.
  4. Place all of the eggs on a baking tray and put in the pre-heated oven for 3 mins.2016-02-26 18.22.07
  5. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool down enough to eat. I think these would be excellent served chopped in half with some sweet chilli jam for dipping.

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Mini Sausage Rolls

2016-02-26 19.03.11

My gorgeous Nephew is turning two in March and I offered to bring something to the party, my sister requested Mini Sausage Rolls. I obviously can’t resist making them from scratch, so I made a practice batch in advance, especially as I’ve never made rough puff pastry before. They were fairly successful flavour wise but I learnt from a few mistakes, which I’ll go through in the steps below.

I used two recipes as a base to follow, the rough puff is from The Hairy Bikers’ Perfect Pies book, the rest of the recipe was adapted from one I found on-line.

I halved the recipes as it was just a test batch, the following amounts made two rolls which I chopped into 10 portions each, making around 20 portions overall.

Ingredients

Rough Puff Pastry
(Adapted from The Hairy Bikers’ Recipe)
  • 110g strong white bread flour (plus extra for rolling)
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • 90g cold butter
  • 60ml cold water
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Sausage-meat filling
  • 250g sausage-meat
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp fresh sage
  • Salt & pepper
To Assemble
  • 1 egg
  • Seasoned flour
Equipment
  • Rolling pin
  • Thin baking tray

baking steps

rough puff pastry
  1. Measure the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and use a round bladed knife to cut the butter down to mix it into the flour. Keep cutting the butter down into smaller pieces tossing them with the flour until lightly coated. Stop when the butter chunks are still recognisable in the flour, and before it all becomes a breadcrumb consistency.
  2. Combine the lemon juice and water and add them to the butter flour mix. Continue working the mixture with the knife until the dough comes together and the bowl is almost clean. Remove it from the bowl and place on a floured surface. Using a well floured rolling pin roll the dough to a rectangle 3 times longer than it is wide. Two things are key at this stage, that the pastry remains cold so the butter does not melt and that the surface and rolling pin are kept floured to make sure the pastry doesn’t stick. A nice cold granite worktop helps wonders with this bit!
  3. Fold down the top third of the pastry and fold up the bottom third, then press the edges with a rolling pin. Rotate it 90° and use the rolling pin to make 3 depressions in the pastry – this helps keep the edges straight. Roll it into a rectangle again.2016-02-26 17.40.27
  4. Repeat step 3 five more times, not forgetting to keep the rolling pin and surface well floured. This is to make the pastry layered and puff up. Wrap the pastry in clingfilm and chill for at least an hour, or overnight. Before using allow it to stand at room temperature for a few minutes before rolling.
mise en place
(put in place – prep work!)
  1. Grate the onion, draining away the juice. This is to rectify one of the mistakes I made, to stop the mixture from being too wet ensure the pastry is nice and crisp and not soggy on the inside.
  2. Finely chop the fresh sage.
  3. Break the egg into a small bowl and beat with a fork.
Sausage-meat
  1. In a large bowl combine the sausage-meat, onion, basil, sage and a season well with salt and pepper. Mix until everything is well combined. At this point you can fry off a small bit of the mixture to check the seasoning and adjust if necessary – remember you can always add but you can’t take away! If the mixture is too wet you can add some breadcrumbs, or if it’s too dry add some orange juice or water.
  2. If you are prepping ahead you can wrap the mixture in cling film at this point and chill in the fridge for a few hours.2016-02-26 17.42.36
ASSEMBLY
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C fan.
  2. Lightly flour the work surface with the seasoned flour. I actually used the paprika seasoned flour left-over from my Chorizo Scotch eggs, which gave the pastry more flavour.
  3. Roll out the pastry until it is around 25 x 25 cm and 1 cm thick. Note if you’ve doubled the recipe you’ll need to divide the pastry in two first and then roll out two squares.2016-02-26 17.41.46
  4. Using a sharp knife divide the square into two rectangles. 2016-02-26 17.42.12
  5. Divide the sausage-meat mixture into two.
  6. Place the sausage-meat mixture closest to the left side of the pastry.
  7. Brush the right edge with the egg wash. Again I used the leftover egg from the Chorizo Scotch eggs as you won’t need a whole egg for this.2016-02-26 17.45.33
  8. Take the left side of the rectangle and roll the pastry over the sausage-meat, making sure it is wrapped tight  so there is no gap and the pastry glues, seam-side-down. This is another mistake I made leaving a gap, meaning the filling can fall out as you’re eating them. 2016-02-26 17.46.082016-02-26 17.46.172016-02-26 17.46.22
  9. Repeat step 8 for the other rectangle.2016-02-26 17.47.04
  10. Brush the rolls with the remainder of the egg wash and make small clean cuts across the top around 3 cm apart. 2016-02-26 17.50.43
  11. Bake for 25 minutes until the pastry is golden brown and crisp.2016-02-26 18.25.01
  12. To serve slice each roll into 10 small bites, and eat with chutney or piccalilli. Or straight from the oven at speed as this batch was!

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