We had a few friends over for small get-together last night and had some fun with planning our menu. Actually, we waited until the absolute last minute to plan the menu, but when we settled on what we were serving, I was really pleased with how it came together.
Typically, I’ll cook a meal when we have a party so that everyone eats at one time and fills up (last time I made chicken and waffles, which went down well!). I thought it would be fun this time to serve canapés and give guests three different dishes to try. We made shrimp n’ grits, scotch quail eggs, and barbecue chicken wings served in adorable little ceramic dishes we picked up at Sainsburys.
You may have seen my recipe for scotch eggs with chicken eggs, but here is a slightly different version in case you’d like to serve up smaller, hors d’oeuvre-sized portions.
(Makes 12 eggs)
12 quail eggs
4 chicken eggs
1 pack sausage meat (about 450g)
chopped fresh chives
chopped fresh sage
2 cloves minced garlic
salt and pepper
1 tbspn English mustard
splash of milk
a hefty portion of fresh breadcrumbs
cajun spice mix
oil for deep frying
Start boiling a large pot of water for your eggs. In a bowl mix your meat, herbs, garlic, and mustard then salt and pepper to taste. You can judge the amount of chives and sage to use according to your own taste.
Once your water is boiling, gently lower your 12 quail eggs into the water and boil for 2.5 minutes– this will give you cooked whites with slightly runny yolks. Three minutes will give you a firmer yolk without over-doing it. Once you remove the eggs from the boiling water, run them under cold water to prevent them from cooking further. To peel the eggs, place an egg under your palm, press lightly, and gently roll. After cracking, you should be able to peel easily.
Now you need to prepare your production line. In one bowl, whisk four chicken eggs with a small splash of milk. In the second, pour in flour seasoned with cajun spice, salt and pepper. The third will be for breading your eggs and you can leave it empty for now.
Fill a pot with oil for deep frying and heat it to about 180C, or to the point when a breadcrumb begins to fry when you throw it in. Lay out a square of cling film on your counter and lightly flour it. Divide your meat into 12 even meatballs, lay your first one on your cling film, and then sprinkle flour on the top. Lay another square of cling film on the top, and then roll the meatball flat until it’s large enough to wrap around your egg.
To build your egg, gently roll the egg in your seasoned flour, place it on your meat, and encase it. Place the meat-wrapped egg in your seasoned flour, coating it, then dip it in your egg. Now place this in your empty bowl and pour your breadcrumbs over it to coat the egg. Dip in the egg again, then coat with more breadcrumbs. Carry out this process for each of your eggs.
Once your oil is the right temperature, carefully lower them into the pot and fry for 3 minutes. We just bought a new deep fryer and it totally changed our lives– highly recommend! You want them to be a rich golden brown when finished. Remove from the pot and lay them on a paper towel to remove any excess oil.
It’s worth noting that these do very well when prepped in advance. I prepped the eggs for our party a couple of hours ahead of time so that when I was ready to serve, I just needed to fry them for 3 minutes. The yolks were still perfect after refrigeration, and these eggs taste much better served fresh. I like to serve them on a mixed salad tossed in honey mustard dressing.