This is an idea I am proud of, and that many of you might not have seen on its first outing two years ago. I can recommend giving them a go – haggis and egg is a most excellent combination of flavours. The iridescent pea puree is optional. I’ve reworded the post a bit to make it clearer; some of the detail is lost in the mists of time, unfortunately, but I’ve tried to give the recipe as best I could. If you’re going to give them a go, be a bit flexible in your approach and be prepared for needing a little more of everything, just in case…Ingredients:
- six quail eggs
- four slices of haggis
- one large egg, beaten
- a non-specific amount of wholemeal breadcrumbs – probably about two or three slices worth?
The first thing I did was boil up six quail eggs. I lowered them gently into a pot of barely simmering water, and left for six minutes. Then I removed and put into a bowl of very cold water – this stops the yolk discolouring from over-cooking. Once they had cooled, which doesn’t take long with these tiny eggs, I took them out and crackled the shells, then peeled. This was the hardest part, as a lot of the white was keen to stay with the shell, so the end results were a bit raggedy and even smaller than they should have been.
The next step, and this is something you probably won’t hear people say very often, was to wrap the eggs in haggis. I’d bought slices of haggis as it was the smallest available amount – four slices was about right for six quail eggs, though I could probably have stretched it to cover another two or three if I’d been a bit more economical. It was tricky to cover the eggs with the meat, especially as haggis is dryer than sausage meat, and at first I didn’t think it was going to work. Once I’d managed one, though, it became clearer how to best go about the process. I took the skin off the haggis slice and broke in half, then worked the haggis between my hands to make it softer and more pliable. Like playdough. Playdough made of animal organs. Then I flattened it out into a rough rectangle and put the egg in the middle, and folded the meat round, pinching it to seal the egg in. They took a bit of prodding and folding to get a total cover on them but it didn’t really take long. As with a lot of other things that are a bit fiddly (fiddly like awkward, not like ceilidh music), practise was really the key element. The last one was much easier to do than the first.
Once the eggs were all wrapped up tight, I rolled them in beaten egg, then in wholemeal breadcrumbs, patting on extra breadcrumbs where they looked a bit bald. I tried to pat the breadcrumbs down well, and another time I’d make more of an issue of this as the bottom of my oven really did get more than its fair share of breadcrumbs when I tried to turn the eggs over half way through baking. I had them on a baking rack to allow the top and bottom to crisp up – I should also have greased the rack, as they stuck a little bit, too. Nothing disastrous, though – one did break open, but it closed over again happily enough. I baked the eggs at 180C for 20 minutes – next time I wouldn’t bother turning them at all, too risky. Like egg roulette.
I served the eggs with a pea puree, but next time I would spend more time and thought on it and would do some kind of tomato-based accompaniment, like a fancy version of ketchup, or a chutney, maybe. The pea puree was nice enough but really only there for a bit of colour. The last thing I have to say about them is that they didn’t slice well at all, as you can see – I think spending more time compressing the haggis against the egg, then the breadcrumbs against the haggis, might solve that problem. For a first attempt, though, I feel pretty proud of myself.