Posted on March 31st, 2011
So there we were. A group of wayward travelers in London, jet-lagged, over-caffeinated, famished, and in need of a nice brew. Nicola led us to one of her favorite haunts in the Clarkenwell area, the Three Kings Pub. In was nice and cozy inside and we found a great big wooden table in the corner. Good music was playing, and the crowd was young, neighborhood-y, and relaxed. Pints were poured and then there was the question, “How many Scotch Eggs are we going to order?”
Scotch Eggs. I had heard of them before, but I never completely understood what they were, or what I was missing. In general, I love anything hard boiled, encased in a seasoned sausage/blood pudding coat, then breaded, deep fried and stored in a fridge under a bar for a couple of days. This was no exception. When I asked the bartender if they were ever served hot, she gave me an amused little laugh and said “No. That’s really not the point of them.” This left me wondering as I gazed into the creepy little quarters of yellow meaty eyes staring back at me from the plate, “What is the point of them?”
Confused and tired, I brought back a plate of meaty & vegetarian Scotch Eggs. The vegetarian ones were encased in fake meat but other than that they had none of the appeal that the meaty ones had. Even though they are deep fried, the outside isn’t at all crispy, it’s soft and spongy and gives way to its lower mantle of tasty tasty meat. This was my favorite part. The meat was a little spicy and the texture was a little chewy and strange, and I immediately equated the taste and feel to haggis. I proclaimed this happily to anyone who listened, but since they were all vegetarians, and probably thought I was joking, I could not really get affirmation from anyone, so you’ll just have to trust me.
Past the meat mantle and into the outer and inner core of our Scotch Egg planet, is exactly what you’d expect, a slightly dry hard boiled egg, which offsets the spicy saltiness of the meat coating nicely. According to the interwebs, there are variations on the Scotch Egg. There is something called a “Manchester Egg” which is allegedly a pickled egg wrapped in black pudding, and a “Worcester Egg” where the egg is pickled in, yes, Worcestershire sauce and wrapped with meat and white pudding. Yum!
So again, what is the point? Why do they exist? They go well with beer. That’s why. They’ve always been served cold because it’s something a bar can sell you easily and they are relatively hardy little things that don’t require much care after they’re made. Works for me.
Back at the hotel, I related my day to my roommate Rosie, a vocalist in the band. She pointed out that I should take stock in all the things I ate that day of days. The longest day that will start many, many long days ahead.
The vegetarian gluten blob airplane meal.
Expensive stuffed eggplant & goat cheese rhombi at “The Gate”
3-5 coffees. I really don’t know how many I had.
4 Scotch Eggs
3 pints of beer
¼ Pork pie (Didn’t feel it needed to be mentioned. It was gross)
27 Cadbury Mini eggs (the ones with the crunchy candy shell) in the hotel room before bed
This might be one of my better nutritional days for the next two weeks as a rock ‘n’ roll hobo.