For our second Local Challenge, Edward Jones of Fountain Violet Farm in Kingswear gives us – eggs!
Edward has around 5000 free range chickens on a beautiful field at the top of the farm overlooking Start Bay and the river Dart. He produces top grade eggs, mainly for Waitrose, to their incredibly strict free range standards. But if you are lucky enough to live in, or be visiting, the Dartmouth area, you can also get them at the fab new Rockfish restaurant in Brixham, the Dartmouth butchers, the Smith St Deli, and the Kingswear Village shop and several other places too. These are supereggs – and here’s some (hopefully super?) ideas what to do with them.
So, a huge thank you to Edward and Emma Jones. And as always, to Holly and David at Manna from Devon.
Let’s get cooking!
Scotch Eggs with Tofu
Scotch eggs – that good old British standard.
Actually, you might be surprised to hear that scotch eggs are well known in Japan too, as a regular at western-style food restaurants – what we call “yoshokuya”.
Yoshokuya restaurants have been popular in Japan since long before western food became mainstream here. Scotch eggs, omelettes, omuraisu (maybe you don’t know omuraisu? It’s stir-fried rice (raisu) covered in a fluffy omelette – I’ll tell you how to make it another time!) curry and rice, spaghetti, potato croquettes – all of these are Japanese variations on western foods that started at yoshokuya and have now become much-loved regulars in every Japanese home. When I was little I used to love the consomme soup at our local yoshokuya…
But I digress – let’s get back to scotch eggs. I like mine with the yolks still a little bit soft, boiled for precisely 7 and a half minutes. And I add tofu to the meat coating, too, to keep the calories down.
If you can get it, I recommend using okara (it’s also sometimes called unohana) which is a by-product in the tofu-making process, full of fibre and delicious. If you have raw okara, fry it without oil quickly first to reduce the water content. Then soften it with a little bit of soy milk and mix in with your meat.
- 6 boiled eggs
- 1/2 an onion
- *360g minced pork (or sausage meat)
- *100 g momen (cotton) tofu
- *1 beaten egg
- *1 pinch of salt
- *3 tablespoons worcester sauce
- beaten egg
- salad oil
1. Put the eggs with a little salt in boiling water and boil for 7.5 minutes. Remove immediately, cool in ice water, remove the shells and then leave to cool.
2. Wrap the tofu in kitchen paper and heat in a 600w microwave for 3 minutes. Then place a plate or something similar on top of the tofu and leave for a hour or so to squeeze out the water.
3. We want the umami in the onions as well as their crunchiness, so finely chop your onion then fry just half slowly in salad oil till it is golden brown, leaving the rest raw.
4. Add the raw and fried onions to the ingredients above marked with an asterisk and knead with your hands until the mixture is firm and sticky. Then leave to rest in the fridge for half an hour or so.
5. To make sure the meat sticks to the eggs, wipe them dry and then coat them with a little bit of flour.
6. Divide the sausage mix in to 6 equal amounts and wrap around each of the boiled eggs.
7. Dip each one into flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs in that order, then deep fry in medium hot oil for 3 or 4 minutes. If you don’t have enough oil to cover the eggs completely, use a ladle to spoon the oil over the eggs, and fry them for a little bit longer.
Japanese Egg Roll (dashimaki tamago)
Japanese egg rolls are made by mixing dashi to beaten eggs. In Japan they are usually eaten with grated daikon radish and soy sauce, as a snack with sake. Maybe think of the eggs you get at a sushi restaurant?
Here in Japan we make them with a square kind of frying pan, and then shape them with the same makisu used for making sushi rolls. But you can do it with a normal frying pan and tin foil just as well.
It takes a bit of practice to get the eggs to roll just right, but if you persist you should get it! Believe and you will win! (…maybe? hahaha)
And if it all goes wrong? Hey, an omelette with dashi is just as delicious!
- 4 eggs
- 4 tablespoons dashi
- 1 tablespoon mirin
- 1 tablespoon usuguchi soy sauce
1. Break the eggs in to a bowl and beat – you don’t want to create an egg froth, but rather try and cut the white and mix it with the yolks smoothly. If you can, try using chopsticks instead of a fork, repeatedly lifting and the egg whites till they drop.
2. Mix the dashi, mirin and soy sauce with the eggs.
3. Coat a frying pan with oil, pour in a little of the egg mix till it is covered evenly with about 2 mm of egg, and when it is half cooked roll the egg over itself from the far end towards you.
4. When you have rolled to the end, gently push the egg back to the far end, add another thin layer of raw egg mix as above, lifting your half completed roll so the raw egg flows underneath as well.
5. Like before, when the new layer of egg is hall cooked, roll the first roll towards you to add a new layer.
6. Repeat the process until you have used up your raw egg mix – maybe 3 to 5 times.
7. When you have rolled all the mix, remove it from the pan and roll in the sushi makisu while it is still hot to shape it. (That’s how we do it in Japan – in a long rectangular shape – but of course you can make it any shape you want!)
8. Your egg roll is delicious just as it is, but you can eat it with a bit of grated daikon and soy sauce if you like.
Japanese Egg Roll with Mushroom Sauce
Japanese egg roll is usually eaten as a side dish, and doesn’t usually work as a main player, but here’s an idea for how to make it a grown-up dish all of it’s own. This mushroom and dashi cream sauce is really yummy – rich and fresh – and it would go wonderfully with sautéed fish as well. Experiment!
- 4 mushrooms
- 5 tablespoons dashi
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 100cc cream
1. Thinly slice the mushrooms.
2. Using a heavy pan, melt the butter and warm the mushrooms on a low heat.
3. When they are heated through, add your konbu and bonito dashi and the wine and heat more, stirring with a wooden spatula in a scraping motion along the bottom of the pan.
4. Add the cream, salt and pepper to taste, and finally the chopped parsley.
5. Pour the hot sauce over your egg roll, and voila!