So, six months or so since my last recipe, I’m back. Without wishing to go into the gory details, plastic surgery after a non-chef related injury has meant many frustrating months off work. Thankfully, the whole team at The Eagle in Barrow has been more than sympathetic to my needs.
CHEF TONY SAYS: I’ve decided to bring you a delicious vegetarian recipe that requires very little skill and equipment. Yep, vegetarian black pudding scotch eggs, there’s no pigs’ blood here.
My long-suffering wife of one year (three years as a fiancée and ten years as my girlfriend) has been a vegetarian since we met and although I spent years trying to persuade her to eat meat again, she’s really opened my eyes and mind to vegetarian cooking.
I’m always questioning why the veggie options on a menu are consistently the same things – mushroom stroganoff, a boring risotto (risotto is great but the veggie selection always lacks thought and, nine times out of ten, it’s mushroom) or a goat’s cheese tart. The list is short.
A few years ago Rachael wanted to eat at Greens, a vegetarian restaurant owned by Simon Rimmer. This really set my imagination going as to what restaurants could offer vegetarians. Greens is where we were introduced to vegetarian black pudding, made by the real Lancashire black pudding company, and I’ve been experimenting with it ever since.
So, let me introduce you to vegetarian black pudding with this scotch egg recipe.
Vegetarian Black Pudding Scotch Eggs
6 free range large eggs
2 sticks of vegetarian black pudding
White wine vinegar
1 tablespoon bicarbonate of soda
If you have time I suggest pickling your boiled eggs. This will help with the finished flavour but you can cheat a little with the dressing.
Place four eggs in a pan and cover with three centimetres of cold water. Add bicarbonate of soda and bring water to the boil. Boil for 2.5 minutes and then remove eggs from the pan into cold water.
If you’re making the scotch eggs immediately then follow these instructions: while the eggs are cooling open the veggie pud and put in a mixing bowl. Add one egg and smush up with your hands – or you can use a mixer if you’d like. If you’re going to pickle the eggs leave this step for now.
Carefully peel the eggs, trying not to break the egg white as the yolk will still be runny and you don’t want it to leak. If you are pickling your eggs then place in a sterilised glass jar and cover with white vinegar. Leave for 10 days.
Meanwhile, make your breadcrumb station. Pour flour into one bowl. Crack an egg into another bowl, add some milk and whisk. Place the breadcrumbs into a third bowl.
Split your veggie pud mix in four and flatten it in your palm. Place the egg in the centre and fold the mixture around the egg trying to get an even covering of mixture around the egg. Place the egg into the bowl with the flour and repeat for all four eggs.
Coat the eggs in flour, using this time to mould your eggs into perfect rounds. Place the eggs one at a time into the egg mixture, and then into breadcrumbs coating the eggs in crumbs. Place the egg back into the egg mix and then back into the breadcrumbs – this is to double the breadcrumb coating on the eggs. Place scotch eggs in a fridge for 15 minutes.
Heat your deep fat fryer to 190°C and preheat an oven to 180°C. Fry the scotch eggs one or two at a time depending on size of fryer til golden brown. Place on an oven tray. Once all four eggs are golden brown, cook in the oven for six minutes.
I served mine on a bed of rocket with a wholegrain mustard dressing.
PROPER FOOD FOR PROPER APPETITES
Each week, discover recipes to nourish the soul, all compiled and concocted by Chef Tony, a gastronome with 15 years’ of experience cooking across the North West. Chef Tony has worked in some of the region’s best kitchens, including the award-winning Nutters in Rochdale and The Lowry at Salford Quays.