Chefs' Recipes

Nik Hill's Scotch egg & piccalilli

The Scotch egg that turned heads during Hill's time at Sydney's Old Fitzroy Hotel.

By Nik Hill
  • 25 mins preparation
  • 30 mins cooking (plus pickling, resting, chilling)
  • Makes 6 Scotch eggs
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"Our piccalilli is more of a vegetable pickle than the traditional canary-yellow sludge I recall eating as a kid," says Hill. "I do love the sludge, but its sweetness doesn't cut the mustard here." Start this recipe at least two days ahead for the piccalilli.

Ingredients

  • 8 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 200 gm minced pork shoulder (see note)
  • 100 gm minced bacon (see note)
  • 1 tbsp hot English mustard
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 300 gm pork sausage mince
  • 125 gm (1½ cups) panko crumbs
  • 100 gm rolled oats
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Piccalilli
  • 20 gm (1 tbsp) table salt
  • ½ small cauliflower (about 400gm), cut into small florets
  • 1 telegraph cucumber, seeds removed and chopped
  • 1 small fennel bulb, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tbsp hot English mustard
  • 300 ml white wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp cornflour

Method

  • 1
    For the piccalilli, combine salt, cauliflower, cucumber and fennel in a large bowl and mix with your hands until vegetables begin to release their juices. Heat oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add onion and season with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent (4 minutes). Add turmeric, mustard and vinegar, then remove from heat and pour directly over vegetables, stirring to combine well. Transfer to a sterilised 1-litre mason jar, seal and set aside at room temperature for 48 hours.
  • 2
    Strain vegetables, reserving liquid. Place cornflour and 125ml reserved pickling liquid
    in a small bowl and stir to combine. Add remaining liquid to a small saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat. Add cornflour mixture. Whisking briskly, return to the boil and cook for 10 seconds. Pour mixture over the pickled vegetables, stir to combine, then season with salt and pepper. Seal and refrigerate until required (see note).
  • 3
    For the Scotch eggs, bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Carefully add 6 eggs and cook until soft-boiled (5 minutes and 20 seconds precisely). Drain and refresh in a bowl of iced water. Set aside to cool (10 minutes), then carefully peel. Drain on paper towel, then refrigerate until firm (20 minutes).
  • 4
    Place minced pork, bacon, mustard and sage in a large bowl and combine well. Add sausage mince and beat vigorously. Divide mixture into 6 equal portions and press each portion into your palm to create a pancake large enough to cover the egg. Place an egg in the centre and mould the mince mixture around it to seal completely. Place on a tray and return, uncovered, to the fridge to firm up (1 hour).
  • 5
    Combine panko and oats in a large bowl. Lightly whisk remaining eggs in a bowl. Dust each wrapped egg in extra flour, then coat in egg wash, then breadcrumb mixture. Refrigerate until required.
  • 6
    Heat oil in a deep-fryer or deep-sided frying pan to 160°C. Deep-fry the eggs, in batches, until golden (6 minutes). Rest for 3 minutes, then test the yolk by sliding a skewer into the centre and testing the temperature on your wrist. It should be warm to the touch. Season and serve with plenty of piccalilli and a pint of lagerAsk your butcher to mince the pork shoulder and bacon for you; otherwise, use a food processor to produce a fine mince. Piccalilli will keep in the fridge for up to 1 month.

Notes

Ask your butcher to mince the pork shoulder and bacon for you; otherwise, use a food processor to produce a fine mince. Piccalilli will keep in the fridge for up to 1 month.