On my first trip to Kolkata – 13 years ago – I was introduced to my new extended Indian family, going from home to home, meeting a bevy of smiles and warmth behind each door. Every household we visited offered food in great abundance – either a full meal or some delicious snacks. I struggled a little with the sweet treats, not having a sweet tooth, but the savoury snacks were something else.
As we normally saw three or four different families on average each day I had to be diplomatic when it came to eating. Not eating would be disrespectful, so I had to pace myself. One of life’s more pleasing conundrums. One snack that really stood out was Indian Scotch eggs, which were just so heavenly. Unlike your traditional Scotch egg which has sausage meat covering the egg, this one has spiced potato and has half a boiled egg per ball.
I have been trying to replicate the recipe ever since and I think I am pretty close so I wanted to share it with you all today.
Indian Scotch Eggs
5 medium potatoes, peel and boiled then mashed
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garlic-ginger paste
1 tsp salt, to taste
2 small fresh green chillies, finely chopped
handful of fresh curry leaves, finely chopped – optional
breadcrumbs – either freshly made, panko or bought
4 tbsp sunflower/vegetable oil for frying
- First peel and boil the potatoes until they are soft. This usually take around 10-12 minutes. Drain and then mash until smooth. Do not add any butter or milk. They must not be too wet.
- Meanwhile boil 3 of the eggs by placing them in a pan of cold water and then once it is simmering, turn it down and leave to cook for a further 8 minutes so that they are completely hard. Once cooked drain and immediately put in a bowl with ice and cold water – this will allow you to peel the egg really easily. Leave the eggs to sit for a few minutes before peeling them and leaving them to rest on a plate
- Add the spices, garlic-ginger paste, chillies, fresh curry leaves if using, salt and mix in thoroughly. Allow to cool before handling the potato.
- In a shallow bowl add the remaining egg and whisk.
- In a separate bowl add some breadcrumbs.
- Halve the eggs, lengthwise. Take a small amount of spiced mashed potato into your hand and place the egg, yolk side down, onto the mashed potato. Gently cover the whole egg with the potato to create a ball. Place to one side whilst you do the same to the remaining eggs.
- Now take one potato ball at a time and gently roll it in the whisked egg followed by the breadcrumbs then place on a plate. Complete the rest.
- Heat the oil and when it is hot gently fry each potato ball, a couple at a time, turning at intervals so that the breadcrumb coat bronzes nicely. Place to one side, whilst you complete the rest.
- They are wonderful eaten hot, but equally you can serve them at room temperature – perhaps perfect for a train journey.
I like to eat them with a chutney. My tamarind and date chutney works really well.