For Chantal’s birthday party, I made some Scotch eggs with a delicious herby dipping sauce. This is the meaty version, I will post the veggie one later this week.
As I wanted to serve something “snack size”, I found a recipe using quail eggs instead of hen eggs. This one is based a recipe by Galton Blackiston, chef at the Michelin starred Morston Hall in Blakeney (Norfolk, UK), I found at over at Great British Chefs.
I had not heard before of this “Bois Boudran” sauce and looking at main ingredients being shallots, oil, vinegar and ketchup I was a bit skeptical. It tastes amazing though!
After some browsing, I found out that the recipe has been attributed to the very well-respected chef Michel Roux Sr. Funnily, in this video Michel Roux Sr. himself says that it was “created in the early 1960s by one of the chefs in the family of the de Rothschild’s”. That could have been him being modest as he was working for the Baroness Cécile de Rothschild in Paris back then… Anyway, despite the somewhat pedestrian ingredients, it proves a common sauce among chefs: I found recipes by Heston Blumenthal (paired with sous vide salmon and mashed potatoes) and Gordon Ramsey (as marinade/sauce for beef fillet).
Compared to the original Bois Boudran recipe Galton’s version does not emulsify the vinegar and oil before adding the other ingredients. Therefore, the sauce “separates” a bit and you do need to run a spoon through just before serving to combine again. Furthermore, he adds some extra texture by including some chopped tomatoes; I used some cherry tomatoes that I first halved and then quartered.
- 12 quail eggs
- 750g of sausage meat
- 50g of Dijon mustard
- 5g of chives, chopped
- 5g of chervil, chopped
- 1 egg
- 10g of sea salt
- 1 pinch of ground white pepper
- vegetable oil, for frying
Note: I skinned 8 mustard/parsley veal sausages. As they were already seasoned, I only used 2-3g of salt
- 200gr of flour mixed with 10g of salt
- 100gr of breadcrumbs
- 1 egg, beaten
Note: I used panko breadcrumbs for an extra crunch. As panko (usually) already contains salt I omitted the salt from the flour mix
Bois boudran dipping sauce
- 150ml of rapeseed oil
- 50ml of white wine vinegar
- 2 tomatoes, peeled and diced
- 85g of ketchup
- 100g of shallots, finely chopped
- 15g of chervil, finely chopped
- 10g of tarragon, finely chopped
- 5g of chives, finely chopped
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 5 drops of Tabasco
Note: As reflected in below photo, I doubled the quantities as I also did some veggie scotch eggs
- Start the scotch eggs by boiling the quail eggs for 2,5 minutes. After boiling, refresh the eggs in ice water for 20 minutes, then peel them
- In a large bowl, combine the sausage meat with the Dijon mustard, chives, chervil, egg, salt and white pepper. Lay out the meat on a baking sheet and put another baking sheet on top. With a rolling-pin, gently roll over the top baking sheet in order to roll out the meat to about 1cm thick
- Remove the baking sheets and divide the meat into 12 portions. Place a peeled quail egg on each portion of meat and roughly mould the meat around the egg, being careful not to overlap too much. Repeat for each egg
- In three separate bowls, have your egg wash, breadcrumbs and flour, ready. Coat the eggs by dipping each one into the flour, then the egg wash, followed by the breadcrumbs – rolling the eggs in your hand to keep their shape. Chill the eggs in the fridge until needed
- To make the Bois Boudran dipping sauce, mix all the ingredients for the sauce together in a bowl until combined. Cover and set aside
- To cook the Scotch eggs, fill a large saucepan with vegetable oil to halfway and heat the oil to 180ºC, using a sugar thermometer to check the temperature (or use a deep fat fryer)
- Carefully place your Scotch eggs into the hot oil and fry for 2 minutes – or until golden all over. Remove the eggs from the oil and place on kitchen towel to dry a little – the Scotch eggs should be golden on the outside and retain their liquid centre – and serve.
What worked and what didn’t:
Of course preparing Scotch eggs yourself is time-consuming and using quails eggs makes it a bit harder (especially shelling them according to Chantal 😇) and longer as you end up making more of them.
But it was well worth it. Scotch eggs are always an eye catcher at (dinner) parties and these Scotch quail eggs are fabulous: crunchy on the outside, nicely seasoned succulent meat around the oozy, richly flavoured quails eggs. Also they go very well together well with the Bois Boudran sauce, which is not only packed with intense flavours and great depth from the chervil and tarragon, but is also nicely textured due to the chopped shallots and tomatoes. They were gone in no-time, so that’s always a good sign.
What I love about this sauce is that it’s super easy to make and that it’s extremely versatile. Based on the recipes I found, you can use it as an accompaniment for salmon, tuna, prawns, scallops, roast potatoes, gourmet hamburgers and roast chickens. However, I also saw it being used as dressing for celeriac salad, marinade for chicken satay and dipping sauce for Scotch eggs.
The recipe is accurate, easy to follow and indeed yields 12 Scotch quails eggs. To help eating and dipping, I halved them and added 1 teaspoon of bois boudran sauce on top, so you’d have 24 servings.
The recipe for the Scotch quail eggs calls for quite a bit of salt. As said, I ended up only using 2 to 3g of salt as the sausage meat was already seasoned. To check if it needed more salt, I pan-fried a small patty to be able to taste the finished product; it didn’t. A great way to avoid over-seasoning!
In view of the quantity of Scotch eggs and its versatility, I doubled the quantities for the Bois Boudran and that yielded about 900ml of sauce. I only ended up using about a third during the party so had some leftovers.
Please accept my sincere apologies for the extremely corny jars…
Not that I can think of.
Verdict: 9/10; Will definitely be made again. I will also definitely try the original emulsified Bois Boudran version to get a more “sauce” type consistency.