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500g mixed pork and veal mince
3/4 cup (75g) fine fresh breadcrumbs
2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
12 quail eggs or small (45g) chicken eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup (50g) plain flour, plus extra to dust
1 cup (50g) panko crumbs or fine fresh breadcrumbs
3 cups (750ml) vegetable oil, to deep-fry
1 1/2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp mustard powder
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1/3 cup (80ml) thickened cream
1/4 cup (60ml) white wine vinegar
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp olive oil
1 Place mince, fine fresh breadcrumbs, parsley, oregano and 1 egg in a large bowl. Season. Using wet hands, mix until well combined. Refrigerate until needed.
2 To make salad cream, mix together flour, sugar, mustard powder and turmeric. Season well. In a separate bowl, mix together cream, vinegar and egg yolk. Pour cream mixture over dry ingredients and whisk until smooth. Whisk in olive oil until combined. Transfer mixture to a small pan and heat on medium, whisking constantly, for 3-5 mins, until thickened. Cool.
3 Bring a pan of salted water to boil on high heat. Gently lower quail eggs into boiling water. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 2 mins. Remove eggs from pan. Immediately immerse in iced water until cool. Drain. Gently roll eggs on a work surface to crack shells. Carefully remove and discard shells.
4 Dust quail eggs lightly in extra flour. Divide mince mixture into 12 equal portions and roll into balls. Flatten balls slightly, then carefully mould mince mixture around quail eggs .
5 Whisk together remaining eggs and a splash of water in a shallow bowl. Place flour and panko crumbs in separate bowls. Roll Scotch eggs in flour and pat off any excess. Dip in egg, then panko crumbs, pressing lightly to coat.
6 Heat oil in a deep-fryer to 170C, or in a heavy-based saucepan on medium until a cube of bread sizzles on contact. Deep-fry Scotch eggs in batches for 3-4 mins, until golden and crispy. Drain on paper towel. Serve Scotch eggs warm or at room temperature with salad cream for dipping.
• Using quail eggs isn’t essential, but they are a nice touch. They’re sold at farmers’ markets and specialty food shops. Use 45g hen eggs as a substitute.
• I use pork and veal mince because it’s lean and has great flavour. You can use good old sausage meat, but it will increase the fat content significantly.
• Panko are Japanese breadcrumbs. They are available from Asian grocers and give a crisp coating. Try adding grated parmesan and chopped herbs.
• When deep-frying, keep the oil at about 170C to prevent the coating absorbing too much of it.
COOK 1hr 5 mins
1.6kg (size 16) chicken
1 garlic bulb, broken into cloves, unpeeled
2 thyme sprigs
1/3 cup (80ml) olive oil
1 eggplant, thinly sliced
1 cup chopped coriander
1 cup (300g) mayonnaise
2 tbsp tahini
12 slices wholemeal sourdough bread
50g baby spinach
1/2 avocado, thickly sliced
Tip: You only need half of the herb mayonnaise to finish this recipe. Store the remaining mayonnaise in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days. It tastes delicious on poached eggs with smoked salmon, as a dressing for potato salad, as a dipping sauce for fresh prawns or hot chips, on roast vegetable sandwiches, or dolloped onto chicken schnitzels.
1 Preheat oven to 180c or 160c fan. Wash chicken inside and out and then pat dry with paper towel. Cut 1 lemon into quarters. Fill cavity with lemon quarters, garlic and thyme. Truss chicken using "one-string truss" method. Season.
2 Heat half of oil in a roasting pan on high. Cook chicken, turning, for 5 mins, until browned all over, finishing breast side up. Bake for 1 hour, until juices run clear when thickest part of thigh is pierced with a skewer. Remove from pan and rest.
3 Meanwhile, heat a chargrill or barbecue in high. Drizzle remaining oil over eggplant, season well and cook for 2-3 mins each side, until golden and soft. Remove and scatter over 1/4 cup of coriander and finely grated rind of remaining lemon. Season.
4 To make herb mayonnaise, place mayonnaise, tahini, remaining coriander and juice of remaining lemon in a food processor and process until smooth. Set aside.
5 Cut marylands, wings and breast from chicken. Remove bones from marylands. Save wings for a snack. Slice breast and thigh meat. Top half of bread with mayo, spinach, avocado, eggplant, chicken and more mayo. Top with remaining bread, if you like. Serve.
- Most chickens are sold in plastic, so its best to rinse then dry the skin and cavity with paper towel to help the skin crisp up during cooking.
- While I use lemon, garlic and thyme in the cavity of the bird, you can use other herbs and aromatics, as well as a light sprinkle of salt, to perfume the chicken while it cooks.
- I truss chicken to maintain its shape, keep it moist and make it easy to turn during cooking. A “one-string truss” method requires 65cm of cooking twine. Place chicken on its back, breast facing you. Holding the string at each end, slide under the chicken from the rear. Tie a single, loose knot, then cross the legs and tighten the string to draw in knot and keep legs in place. Firmly pull the string down the crease between legs and breasts. Turn over chicken and draw string up over the back, securing wings tight against body. Tie and trim excess string.
1/3 cup (80ml) extra virgin olive oil
2 carrots, peeled, finely grated
600g chicken mince
1 1/2 cups (110g) fresh breadcrumbs
1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup (125ml) good quality chicken stock
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp oregano
2 bay leaves
2 thyme sprigs
1/2 cup (40g) shaved pecorino
1 Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large saucepan on medium. Cook carrot, stirring, for 1 min, until coated in oil. Add 1/3 cup water. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 mins, until soft. Cool, then place in a food processor and process until smooth.
2 Place mince breadcrumbs, parsley and 1/3 cup of carrot puree in a large bowl. Season. Using clean hands, mix well until combined. Using clean, wet hands to prevent mixture sticking, shape into 20 small meatballs. Chill for 5 mins.
3 Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp of oil in a deep frying pan medium. Cook onion for 5 mins, until soft. Add garlic. Cook for 1 min, until fragrant. Add tomato, stock, paste, oregano, bay leaves and thyme. Season. Bring to boil. Simmer for 5 mins, until sauce thickens slightly.
4 Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a large frying pan on medium. Cook meatballs, turning, for 5-8 mins, until golden. Transfer to tomato sauce and simmer for 5 mins, until cooked through.
5 Meanwhile, cook spaghetti according to packet directions. Drain. Add to meatballs, reduce heat to low and cook, tossing, for 2-3 mins, until combined. Serve with pecorino. Alternatively, serve meatballs with spaghetti and pecorino alongside.
• I like to drain the pasta, then drop it into the simmering sauce and stir to coat the pasta. I often add a dash of olive oil and fresh herbs, too.
• I love to eat pasta when tossed in the sauce because it makes the most of rich flavours and, in a cheeky way, it also gives you a moment to wash up the pasta pot and calm yourself for a minute while the family gathers around the table to eat.