Freelance writer and wanderer always on the lookout for quirky activities that take you off the beaten track.
Published May 26th 2011
Cold at a picnic or hot in a pub, the humble Scotch egg is making a comeback from its days as a tacky 1970s party favourite or motorway service station basic. Nowadays it is the front runner for fashionable, well-made bar snacks. For those of you who don't know, a Scotch egg consists of a shelled hard-boiled egg, enclosed in a sausage meat mixture, coated in breadcrumbs and then deep-fried. Is your mouth watering yet?
The London department store Fortnum & Mason claims to have invented Scotch egg in 1738 as a convenient snack for coach travellers heading west from London along Piccadilly. These days this once passé delight is undergoing a revival in London, appearing on wooden boards in gastro pubs all across town. Meanwhile, since Spring has sprung the heavy hampers are beginning to be filled and the itchy rugs are shaken and spread out in green parks throughout the city and beyond. The tradition of the great British picnic is simply incomplete without a selection of the quintessential Scotch eggs.
A sad looking pre-packaged version
Everyone has eaten a bad one. They are the staples of bad school dinners and cheap convenience stores. So where can you find a succulent, warm version with yellow, semi-set yolk, slightly spicy and flavoursome sausage meat and with a crisp and juicy coating? Seek out the places below:
26-28 Ray Street, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 3DJ These Scotch eggs are certainly contenders for the best in London. They are perfectly cooked and served with a selection of thoughtful accompaniments.
Harwood Arms 27 Walham Grove, Fulham, London SW6 1QR As London's first Michelin-starred gastropub, you'd expect only the best. And that is what you get, delicious Scotch eggs served with crunch salt crystals. Perfect with a pint.
Southampton Arms Ale and Cider House 139 Highgate Road, Kentish Town, London NW5 1LE There's no cutting corners here, just simple. High-quality pub grub. Including of course, the humble scotch egg which you can enjoy with one of the best beer selections across London.
The Bull & Last 168 Highgate Road, London NW5 1QS
The huge Scotch eggs are only £2.50 each and have been on the menu since the very first day. The staff take pride in leaving the yolks slightly runny.
The Old Truman Brewery
91 Brick Lane, London E1 6QL
This Scotch Egg may just ruin you for all Scotch eggs for eternity… that's how good it is. With a side of homemade salad cream, your tastebuds will be delighted to say the least. And you will most certainly find yourself visiting this suave East end hangout again and again.