Scotch Eggs & Arancini
Beak to Tail Recipes....use the breast for the scotch eggs & legs for the arancini
To cook in the oven pre-heat to 180˚C. For a deep fat fryer it’s 170 ˚C. Or use a deep saucepan with about 3 inches of oil (enough to cover). Use one with a high smoke point like rapeseed or groundnut, and don’t fill it more than half-full as its likely to bubble up when you add the eggs/arancini and you don’t want it to overflow. If you don’t have a thermometer to test the temperature do the bread test – drop in a small piece and if it browns in around 30 seconds it’ll be hot enough.
Scotch Eggs (per egg).
1-2 minced pheasant breasts. Roughly 80-100g mince per egg.
1 parboiled egg to encase in mince, plus an additional egg.
Pinch of your favourite herbs & spices. Nutmeg & mace, sage & tarragon work well. Or a little mustard.
Large spoon of plain flour.
Salt & Pepper
Circa 30g breadcrumbs, panko if you have them.
Method : -
i. Parboil eggs. Start with boiling water, add (your oldest) eggs, reduce to a simmer and cook 6 minutes for a large egg. Adding a little red wine vinegar makes them easier to peel.
ii. Crack slightly and leave to cool in ice cold water / under the running cold tap.
iii. Mix herbs & spices with mince, and season. Hands are best – wet them to avoid the mince sticking so much. Fry off a little to check the seasoning.
iv. Peel eggs under running water.
v. Put the flour in a shallow bow, egg in the next and breadcrumbs in a third.
vi. Roll eggs in flour & wrap mince around them. Use wet hands or a bit of cling film to avoid sticking. Roll in flour again, then egg then breadcrumbs.
vii. Deep fry for around 5 – 7 minutes until golden & crispy. If cooking in the oven fry all over in a little oil first to help colour and crisp up, then pop on a parchment lined tray and cook for about 20 minutes.
(makes around 6 depending on size)
Knob of butter
Splash of olive oil
½ onion, finely diced
Couple of cloves of garlic
Glug of wine or vermouth or indeed gin.
125g arborio rice
Couple of pheasant legs, slow cooked & shredded.
Ball of mozzarella
Some pesto or sun dried tomatoes
Some grated parmesan to taste
Squeeze of lemon juice & grating of zest
Salt & pepper
Spoonful of flour
More oil for frying
Method : -
Firstly, make risotto : -
i. Melt butter with a little olive oil
ii. Soften finely diced onion
iii. Add crushed garlic, being careful not to let it burn.
iv. Add rice and stir to cover with the butter & oil.
v. Add wine/vermouth/your tipple of choice and reduce.
vi. Gradually add the stock a little at a time, stirring constantly until it is absorbed and the rice is cooked.
vii. Stir through the shredded pheasant leg *, thinly sliced sun-dried tomatoes / pesto (if using), a little lemon juice & zest & parmesan. Season & taste.
viii. Spread thinly on a baking sheet (lined with parchment if not non-stick). Allow to cool then chill in the fridge. It is of course imperative to cool rice as quickly as possible.
Then Make THe Arancini : -
i. With wet hands divide the risotto into equal golf ball size balls.
ii. Flatten a ball and pop a piece of mozzarella in the middle, then reform the golf ball around it. It can help to use a small piece of cling film to help shape it.
iii. Pop the flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs in your 3 shallowest bowls.
iv. Dust the ball in flour, then roll in egg and finally in breadcrumbs. For an extra crispy finish repeat the egg & breadcrumb step.
v. Repeat with all the others. It helps if you use one hand for the flour stage and the other for the egg & crumbs which gets a bit messy.
vi. Deep fry for 8 – 10 mins / cook in the oven for 20 mins till crispy on the outside and the mozzarella is melting on the inside. If cooking in the oven you can shallow fry first as per the scotch eggs.
* If you often have pheasant or partridge it’s worth freezing the legs until you have collected a pan full, then you can slow cook a big batch, shred them, and refreeze in portion sizes to add to any number of dishes. You then have a nice stock at the end of it too. Just make sure you freeze the legs in thin layers so they can be defrosted overnight before cooking. Likewise with the shredded meat though this can be thrown straight into a pan to be cooked from frozen as long as you’re cooking something like a stir-fry which will get hot quickly.