The Sweet Spot

Pastry Chef & Traveler

Scotch egg with tomato jam

You must be thinking, what? tomato again?

You really can’t argue that sometimes, tomato is like the underrated vegetable which is more likely used as a garnish in a salad, or a soggy little thing in between sandwich. Sure, tomato sauce is like THE thing but how many of you know how much of tomato actually goes into the sauce?Or, have you came across people who go like …. I eat tomato sauce (aka ketchup) but I don’t eat tomato. Sure. of course.

Actually, that’s me. Was me.

scotch egg 1

These days I want to go for ways you can make interesting dishes with vegetables which are not leafy greens, which are not just stir fried. I think vegetables deserve so to be paid a litle more attention :) But of course, here I’m going to talk about scotch egg, and a tomato jam.

I first came to know about the tomato jam when I was dining in the Kitchen Table supper club in their cozy home and was served a toast of sourdough bread, tomato jam, quail egg and a crispy bacon. So I went ahead and ask how to make the tomato jam cause it’s way way way beyond the flavours of tomato ketchup and so so yummy (addictive too). It’s like this concentrated taste of tomato, sweet and tangy but with a hint of molasses; kinda like sundried tomato but without the saltiness. What’s not to love?

Anyway so I came back and had to have my hands make it so I came across this recipe of caramelized onions and tomato jam instead of just tomato. Did someone say caramelized onion ? (me me me!) So cut things short, this is my 2nd time making the jam and this time around I just made without an actual measurement of the recipe and just went with tasting instincts. If you need the recipe, it’s here.

As for scotch egg, when I researched a little about my travels to London, I wanted to go to Borough Market and one of the many tasty things there was scotch egg. Of course, I never did tasted it because I didn’t even get to go to Borough Market. boo. So I made it myself.

scotch egg with sausage mix

And I also wanted to make the yolks to be runny …… But it was a little over :( But it is still good.. It was a good try. And you know what, you can also add this scotch egg to congee ^^ and even use it for a sandwich the next day ;) Plus it’s a protein packed food except that it was deep fried.

I used a mixture of chili sausage and minced pork to make the outer part. Usually sausages already have a mixed ratio of fat and lean meat, so I just added in a pack of lean pork mince to balance it.

Other than that, the other crucial part is the breading of the skin. You don’t want it to be soggy or the meat to be falling apart or stuck onto the pan when frying. So double coating gives it a good crispy texture. It’s coated with egg wash, then panko (Japanese breadcrumbs), then egg, and panko again. It ended up being this fist sized meat ball with a good surprise!

I would like to make them again and try to get runny yolks for sure!

scotch egg minced meat

Scotch Egg with tomato jam
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 6 eggs
  • 200g plain sausage meat (not frankfurters but fresh sausage)
  • 200g pork mince
  • 3 tbsp chopped mixed herbs (I used sage,thyme, rosemary)
  • 1 tbsp English mustard
  • Splash of milk
  • 50g flour
  • 100g panko breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil, to cook
Instructions
  1. Put four of the eggs into a pan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for five minutes, then put straight into a large bowl of iced water for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Put the meat, herbs, and mustard into a bowl, season and mix well with your hands. Divide into four.
  3. Carefully peel the eggs. Beat the two raw eggs together in a bowl with a splash of milk. Put the flour in a second bowl and season with salt and pepper, then tip the breadcrumbs into a third bowl. Arrange in an assembly line.
  4. Put a square of clingfilm on the worksurface, and flour lightly. Put one of the meatballs in the centre, and flour lightly, then put another square of cling film on top. Roll out the meat until large enough to encase an egg and remove the top sheet of clingfilm.
  5. To assemble the egg, roll one peeled egg in flour, then put in the centre of the meat. Bring up the sides of the film to encase it, and smooth it into an egg shape with your hands. Dip each egg in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, then egg and then breadcrumbs.
  6. Fill a large pan a third full of vegetable oil, and heat to 170C (or when a crumb of bread sizzles and turns golden, but does not burn, when dropped in it). Cook the eggs a couple at a time, for seven minutes, until crisp and golden, then drain on kitchen paper before serving.

 

Europe Summer 2014 Photo Diary

Hey everyone!

I’ll be sharing some photos taken during my travel to Europe in July – August. We flew in to London and spent a couple of days there before taking a cruise to Holland and hired a bus to go to Paris. Here, will be some photos taken in Holland (mainly Amsterdam), Brugge and Brussels of Belgium.

iamsterdam

#1 Iamsterdam

canal ride

#2 Canalception

cheese zaanse schans#3 Eat all the CHEESE!!!

zaanse schans

#4 Of course there has to be a windmill photo.

damsquare

#5 Dam Square (that’s our hotel behind there)

boat house#6 Life on a boat.

brussels fondue

#7 Fondue

atomium#8 Silver balls at Atomium

palace in brussels

#9 Royal Palace of Brussels

pan au chocolat pauls

#10 Pan au chocolate at Pauls (just next to our hotel)

belgian waffle#11 me and my waffle. Belgian waffle <3

brussels

#12 Somewhere in Brugge or Brussels. :x

okay so when I hit Europe from London, I felt more calm and the architecture was also very different. Especially in Amsterdam. Brussels is a very small and quaint town which is quite lovely. Will post next week on Paris’! <3

Fresh tomato soup with grilled cheese toast

Hey hey,

I’ve been cooking quite a bit lately to make dinner for 1 (me) So I make things I like to eat, things that came across today in the mail / pinterest / food sites. As the grocer is just 5 mins away from my work place, I will make a note on what fresh ingredients to buy then go get them after I leave work before I head home.

40 minutes later I would be back and start cooking! I usually try not to do anything tooo over the top and go with just fresh and simple ingredients but not too boring. I also don’t really cook so much chinese food as we eat out alot on chinese food it makes it no reason for me to cook that.. It isn’t very economical honestly to cook for 1. Sometimes you buy a packet of salad leaves and you only eat 1/4 of it. Hence for the next 4 days, you need to incorporate them into your meals before they spoil. It would be great if you have a week meal planned out, reuse some of the ingredients that you can’t just buy ONE unit, then you would save more compared to eating out alone.

fresh tomato soup cheese

So you have two choice, cook for more than one, or don’t cook chinese, indian, italian and greek in the same week ;)

Anyway, one of the days, I came across Food52’s site and ding!!! I saw this recipe for a 20-minute fresh tomato soup with grilled cheese toast.tomato soup

Believe it or not, I’ve not had tomato soup, unless minestrone soup counts as that but just pure tomato…. hrm… nope. So I was quite intrigued by it, plus it was easy to make. I just need to buy …….. tomato! and I already have the rest of the things at home, so, bingo! It’s cheap, kinda healthy and easy to make (did I just say that twice already?) Plus, it’s the perfect comfort TV food without guilt. OKAY I’m not going to say the cheese toast wasn’t that tiny bit guilty but come’on!! It’s Pont L’eveque which I bought from Bastille Market in Paris (for only 6.80 euro for 400g) As for basil, I have them growing in my garden. You don’t know, but the feeling of having to cut or pick your own fresh herbs from your own garden is like a …….. moment of glory, a moment of satisfactory, contentment, however you call it. It’s just different. I urge you to get your green fingers going (I don’t even have green fingers but I think basil plants are quite easy to grow so give it a try.

tomato soup grilled cheese toast

Fresh tomato soup with grilled cheese toast
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 20g softened butter
  • 1 tsp tomato paste
  • 2-3 plum tomatoes (I use very ripe local tomatoes) quartered
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 1 medium garlic clove, halved
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • White wine vinegar to taste
  • 2 1 inch-thick slices white sandwich bread
  • few slices of cheese
  • fresh basil leaves and baby radish for garnishing
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, heat half of butter and the tomato paste over medium heat.
  2. Cook, stirring until the butter is foamy and the tomato paste begins to stick to the bottom of the pan.
  3. Stir in the tomatoes, thyme, sugar, half a garlic clove, and 1 cup water or vegetable stock. Season generously with salt and pepper.
  4. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat, and rapidly simmer for 10 minutes until the tomatoes have broken apart.
  5. While the soup simmers, make the sandwiches: Rub the inside of the bread slices with the cut side of the remaining garlic clove. Stack the cheese on top and a basil leaf and and sandwich it with the remaining bread slice (garlic-rubbed sides of all bread slices should be facing the cheese).
  6. Spread the exposed side of the bread slices with the remaining butter. Add the sandwiches to the hot pan and place a second, heavy skillet over the top or press down with a spatula.
  7. Fry the sandwiches, turning once, until the cheese is melted and the outside of the sandwiches are crispy, about 8 minutes.
  8. Remove the thyme stems from the cooked tomato soup. Transfer the tomato soup to a blender and purée until smooth. Season the soup with salt, pepper, and vinegar. Garnish with sliced baby radishes, a swirl of olive oil and basil leaves.
  9. Serve the soup in bowls, each accompanied with half of a sandwich.

Yummmmy indeed!! I think I have grown an appreciation for soups so I’m going to explore more of it next time. I’m thinking clam chowder, mushroom soups and bisque! I’m not going to lie, this wasn’t just my dinner. I had an omelette at the side after this soup. But after the omelette, I was full already! So sometimes it’s good to eat less meat. There are many ways that we can all eat more vegs, i think soups are just a good way to incorporate more greens into our daily diet.

 

 

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