Sometimes opportunities appear which you just can't ignore. They come to you trussed up ready to be roasted - and you'd be a churl if you were to do anything other than grasp them by the scruff of the neck and give 'em a good wringing. Don't fight it. Slip your curled up claw inside and feel it.
When a copy of Manzine turned up with a recipe for Scotch eggs lolling on the page, it was obvious what time it was. The stars all pointed to getting in the kitchen, dusting off the megaphone and hollering 'more talk, more action. Let's make this shit real'.
According to this new tome, these meaty treats are part of some sort of new man/bachelordom kinda vibe which they're pushing for 2011. It's like Loaded but with less tits (although they do acknowledge them and their milky wonder) and more emphasis on offal foods. Fair dos. This may well be the case. But Scotch eggs have held a strange, intoxicating fascination for time without the dawn of a golden era of manliness being heralded. They appeal for a multitude of sinful reasons possibly too numerous, weird or obvious to number. In part, it's the mixture of great ingredients - eggs and meat in one feral breadcrumby ball - and their spatchcocking of different foody vibes - they've got one breadcrumbed paw in a gutter made of plastic wrapping and gassy scents. The other lives up the aspirational organic chef's sleeve.
It was a big day - The early afternoon was spent sourcing the ingredients. There's something very Enid Blyton about getting your tote out in the sunshine like a smug prick and dilly dallying between supermarkets searching out breadcrumbs. Proper, smug White Isle vibes going on. To be honest, if the hangover hadn't been so big, they could all have been sourced from the corner shop. But the Friday night delirium was still writ large, which was itself something to revel in.
The cooking process took a wee while but step by step these little morselets were pieced together with the help of regular breaks for snouts and cups of tea. Boiling the fuck out of the eggs, massaging the sausage meat, then slathering them in each other. In some ways, it's probably the most erotic experience of the year thus far. Which says a lot about the sort of year it's been. The only real difficulty wasn't in the compiling but in the cooking. The first batch came out looking slightly frazzled, but once bitten twice shy was not the mantra for the moment. It just increased the determination to really nail the next lot and made the whole process a shitload easier. And the taste? With a little tabasco, they were to die for.
Props to Manzine for pointing a brother in the right culinary path - This could possibly be the highlight of the year so far...
My take on the recipe (didn't get any of ingredient 8 until 4am the next morning. Too late)
The first crucial, yet tentative steps
Let the games begin
Surprisingly they both got on rather well
Into the boiling fire hazard...
Boiling boiling boiling
I also got out of bed on Sunday still somewhat inebriated but with a burning desire to let the editorial staff at Manzine know that I'd got off my arse and done summat about this fixation. Here's what I drunkenly wrote to them... I need to get a fucking life...
"On 20 Mar 2011, at 13:55, Jim Ottewill wrote: