Barbecue Scotch Eggs
The New Year has brought with it a spirit to try new things. While the nature of the blog requires me to cook different recipes constantly, at this point they're tending to become mostly variations on a theme. So it was actually not the easiest thing to come up with something completely different, but I finally found it in these barbecued scotch eggs—a recipe that ended up being equally challenging and rewarding.
That challenge came in the form of soft boiled eggs for me. Unless their deviled, I'm not a hard or soft boiled egg fan and actually have never made them in my life—although I've watched my wife do it on many occasions. So to start off this recipe, I had to gain experience in making and peeling soft boiled eggs.
The process of cooking isn't hard, and after scouring the internet for advice, I found the most agreed upon method with positive comments was to carefully lower eggs into gently simmering water and cook them for six minutes.
Once done, they're plunged into an ice bath to stop the cooking and let sit until completely cooled, about 15 minutes. After that, most recipes just say to peel, but they don't mention peeling soft boiled eggs is a bitch, especially for a novice. Out of the eight eggs I made, I was able to peel only one completely intact, and three more with only minor tears—all the others broke open, oozed yolk, and were rendered unusable.
I couldn't make enough scotch eggs for a crowd with really only one perfect specimen, so I went back and did another batch, cooking them one minute longer, knowing that I'd be trading off the ideal runny yolk for eggs that were a bit easier to peel. With this second batch, I also discovered a better peeling procedure than using my hands alone—cracking them first at the bottom and then sliding in a spoon helped remove the shell with less breakage. The longer cooking time and improved peeling process left me not one unusable egg.
So now I actually had way more eggs than I needed, but I figured I was bound to mess a few of these delicate eggs up in the next step of wrapping them in sausage, so I felt good about where I was at this point. I took a lot of care in the wrapping process though, and ended up pulling it off flawlessly. To wrap the eggs, I used pre-made bulk sausage—but for even better results, you can make your own—and broke off a piece about three ounces in weight. I then mashed the sausage into as thin of a layer as possible in one hand, placed the egg in the center, and carefully enclosed the egg in the meat, taking my time sealing the sausage closed and then rolling it between my hands to even it out.
With all the eggs wrapped, my main challenges were over and it was on to doing what I know how to do well—barbecue. I began giving these scotch eggs their barbecue stamp by coating them all over with one of my standard rubs.
Then they went into a smoker running at 250°F with a couple chunks of pecan wood. My goal was to just smoke them long enough to cook the sausage, but not further cook the eggs—I wanted as much runny yolk as possible.
The sausage looked pretty done and lightly browned after 40 minutes, at which time I brushed on a layer of barbecue sauce and let them continue to cook until that baked down nicely—another ten minutes.
Now was the moment of truth—did I achieve the balance between soft boiled egg and barbecue?
As you can see, it worked out relatively well. The photo above is one of the eggs cooked longer, so the yolk was soft, but not runny. The photo at the top of the post has one of the eggs cooked the more appropriate, shorter amount of time, and that one was absolutely perfect. In terms of flavor, these things were off the hook. Since I'm not a boiled egg fan, I actually paused before trying one, but my fellow eaters said these were more barbecue than egg, and they were right. They had an excellent sweet, tangy, and spicy barbecue flavor with the right amount of meat to back it up. The egg mostly introduced new textures that were an incredible change in the face of the mostly all meat items that are the norm for my 'cue. With a little more practice, I'm sure I can perfect the peeling of the ideal soft boiled egg and ensure I make these consistently better in the future. For now though, they symbolize a great way to start a new year that's sure to be filled with equally ambitious new grilling and barbecue adventures that I look forward to sharing with all of you.
Barbecue Scotch Eggs
- Yield 5 servings
- Prep 40 Minutes
- Cook 50 Minutes
- Total 1 Hour 30 Minutes
- 5 large eggs
- 1lb bulk sausage
- 1/3 cup your favorite barbecue rub
- 2/3 cup your favorite barbecue sauce
- 1 chunk of medium smoking wood, such as oak or pecan
- Bring 3 quarts of a water to a gentle simmer in a medium pot set over medium heat. Using a spider, strainer, or slotted spoon, carefully lower eggs into water and cook for 6 -6 1/2 minutes. Transfer eggs to a large bowl filled with ice water and let sit for 15 minutes. Start peeling eggs by cracking at the bottom and removing part of shell. Run a small spoon between remaining shell and egg, then carefully slide egg out of shell, breaking off any shell blocking its way.
- Break off approximately 3 ounces of sausage. Using wet hands, spread sausage out as thin as possible in the of one hand. Place egg in center of sausage and then wrap sausage around egg. Seal edges of sausage together and gently roll egg in hand to even out the sausage layer. Repeat with remaining eggs. Season scotch eggs liberally all over with barbecue rub.
- Fire up a smoker or grill to 250°F, adding chunk of smoking wood when at temperature. When the wood is ignited and producing smoke, place the eggs in smoker, cover, and let cook for 40 minutes. Brush eggs all over with sauce, cover again, and let cook an additional 10 minutes. Remove eggs from smoker, let cool for 5 minutes, then serve immediately.
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Andy boiling eggs is easy... pealing them is hard. if you want perfectly peeled eggs, don't use fresh eggs. they don't peel well and the end result will be ugly and difficult. use eggs that are at least a week old and the shell will slide right off.
leonel molina jr Those look really good! I'm gonna have to try them for sure!
Peyton That looks really good but I am going to have to wait for my grandson to come home to try this. My wife wasn't interested at all.
Neven Here's the egg-peeling step that has made the biggest difference for me: peel under a gently running tap! This will make removing the already peeled shell easier, and water also tends to run between the shell and the egg, loosening it further.
Everything else about your process sounds good%u2014while French cookbooks advise starting the eggs in cold water, this doesn't work for me at all. Drop them cold into boiling water, turn the heat down to a gentle boil, 6-9 minutes.
I'll have to try making these!
Goolam TO HAVE THE EGGS SHELL COME OUT EASILY. PUT THEM IN COLD WATER. CRACK SLIGHTLY ALL AROUND THE EGG AND ROLL IT IN BETWEEN YOUR HANDS. THE SHELL COMES OFF AS ONE PIECE
Gesa You can also babeque them! It takes only about 10 minutes mother barbecue.
I did wrap the eggs in the sausage then put barbecue sauce on two slices of bacon and wrapped the egg and sausage ball in the bacon. Barbecue them and there you go!:0)
John Freeze the egg, set in warm water, peel quickly and immediately wrap in sausage. Booyah, soft, runny yolk after 1hr.