Recipe: Falafel Scotch Eggs

Recipe: Falafel Scotch Eggs

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Christine Gallary
Apr 17, 2017
(Image credit: Christine Han)

There are times when I have a recipe idea that I'm so excited about, I obsess over it until it becomes reality. Friends, let me tell you that this is one of them. I've loved the concept of Scotch eggs for a long time — I mean, who doesn't like deep-fried eggs covered in sausage and breadcrumbs? But to up the ante, I decided to pull in my vegetarian friend: the falafel.

The (gluten-free and vegetarian!) result is everything I thought it would be: crispy, herby spiced chickpeas covering creamy boiled eggs, begging to be dipped in a lemony yogurt sauce. They take a little bit of effort, but boy, is the result ever worth it.

A 2-Day Plan for No-Stress Scotch Eggs

I know this recipe may look daunting — there's falafel mixture to be made, eggs to be boiled, eggs to be wrapped, and finally, the fuss of deep-frying — but trust me when I say that these delicious eggs are worth the effort, and that effort doesn't all have to happen in one day. If you break up the work into two days, it's much more manageable.

Here's how to do it.

  • Day 1: Boil the eggs and peel if you have the time. Soak the chickpeas: Remember that the chickpeas need 18 to 24 hours soaking time to make sure they're soft enough. Make the yogurt sauce.
  • Day 2: Make the falafel mixture and wrap the eggs. The eggs can be wrapped up to three hours ahead and just fried at the last minute if you'd like.

How to Make Boiled Eggs Peel Like a Dream

The eggs are the unpredictable ingredient in this recipe, as they can sometimes be hard to peel. Take your time and don't worry about being perfect; the falafel mixture will cover up any dents. To ensure that I have eggs that peel like a dream, I turn to my pressure cooker. The steam pressure-cooks eggs that practically fall out of their shells, so make good use of your pressure cooker or Instant Pot if you have one.

Learn how: How To Cook Eggs in an Electric Pressure Cooker

These falafel Scotch eggs reheat very well and are even delicious cold, so leftovers are perfect on a salad or served with some tabbouleh for lunch. For all your hard work, I promise that no falafel eggs will go to waste.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

The Egg-cellent Egg

Tired of cooking eggs the same way over and over again? This protein-packed and economical staple can be cooked in countless ways with delicious results. This week we're sharing fun, new ways to serve eggs for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even at snack time. Stash an extra carton of eggs in your basket the next time you're at the store and give these recipes a whirl.

Falafel Scotch Eggs

Makes 6 Scotch eggs

For the Scotch eggs:
3/4 cup dried chickpeas (about 5 1/2 ounces)
4 medium scallions, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons loosely packed fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
6 large hard-boiled or soft-boiled eggs, peeled
4 to 5 cups vegetable oil, for frying

For the yogurt dipping sauce:
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Soak the chickpeas (choose 1 method): With either method, the chickpeas are ready when you can break apart a chickpea with your fingers. Drain before using.

Overnight soak: Place the chickpeas in a medium bowl, add enough water to cover by 1 inch, and let sit uncovered at room temperature for 18 to 24 hours. Quick soak: Place the chickpeas and 2 cups water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, cover, and set aside for 1 hour.

Make the falafel: Place the drained chickpeas, scallions, garlic, parsley, olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, coriander, and salt in a large bowl and stir to combine. Transfer to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse until the chickpeas are finely chopped, 10 or 12 (1-second) pulses. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.

Sprinkle the baking powder over the mixture. Pulse again, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, until the mixture forms a ball when you squeeze it in your hand, about 5 to 6 more (1-second) pulses.

Divide the falafel into 6 even portions (about 1/3 cup each), roll each into a ball, and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Add the eggs to the baking sheet.

Wrap the Scotch eggs: Line a work surface with an 18-inch-long sheet of plastic wrap, long side facing you. Place 1 falafel ball on the plastic wrap about 3 inches from the left side. Fold the plastic wrap in half from right to left over the falafel ball. Using a rolling pin, roll the falafel into a thin patty about 5 inches in diameter.

Uncover the falafel patty. Place an egg in the center of the falafel patty. Gently pull the plastic wrap up to cover the egg in the falafel patty. Use the plastic wrap to gently smooth out the surface and patch any holes, making sure the egg is completely and tightly encased in falafel. Return to the baking sheet and repeat with the remaining falafel balls and eggs. Place in the refrigerator while the oil is heating.

Fry the Scotch eggs: Place enough oil in a 10- or 12-inch cast iron skillet to come halfway up the sides. Heat over medium-high heat until 350°F on a deep-frying/candy thermometer. Meanwhile, fit a wire rack over a baking sheet; set aside. Stir all the dipping sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

When the oil is ready, add 3 of the eggs. Fry, turning every minute or so with tongs, until golden-brown, 4 to 5 minutes total. Remove the eggs to the wire rack. Repeat with the remaining eggs. To serve, cut each egg in half with a serrated knife and serve with the dipping sauce.

Recipe Notes

  • Store-bought sauce: Instead of making the yogurt dipping sauce, you can also serve the Scotch eggs with store-bought hummus or tzatziki dip.
  • Make ahead: The eggs can be boiled and stored in the refrigerator up to 1 day ahead. Remember to soak the chickpeas overnight (18 to 24 hours) for best results. Form the Scotch eggs up to 3 hours ahead and refrigerate until ready to fry.
  • Storage: Leftover Scotch eggs can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in a 325°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
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