Italian scotch olives
Giving olives the scotch egg treatment by rolling them in sausagemeat and breadcrumbs before frying, creates a great starter, or nibble to serve with drinks. This recipe comes courtesy of Italian restaurant Luca, where it's served with confit garlic mayo and crispy sage leaves
- Serves: 6 persons
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 1small onion, finely chopped
- 1clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1tsp fennel seeds
- ½tsp thyme, chopped
- ½tsp sage, chopped
- 100ml red wine
- 300g sausagemeat
- pitted Gordal olives, patted dry of brine
- 150g plain flour, seasoned
- 6egg yolks, whisked with 3 tbsp of milk
- 200g panko breadcrumbs
- vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Step 1Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and cook the onion for 5 minutes until just softening, then add the garlic and fennel seeds, and cook for further 3 minutes. Add the herbs and wine, and reduce to a glaze. Spread the mixture onto a large plate and allow to cool for a few minutes.
Step 2Combine the sausagemeat and onion mixture in a mixing bowl, and work the ingredients together with a pinch of salt and pepper. Divide the mixture into 10 x 25g balls (each about the size of a quail’s egg).
Step 3Take an olive and wrap the meat around it until completely covered (just like a scotch egg). Roll the scotch olives around in the seasoned flour (use a plate or flat bowl) coating all over. Dip the scotch olives individually in the egg yolk, let the excess drip off, then coat thoroughly in the breadcrumbs. Put on a plate ready for cooking.
Step 4Fill a pan no more than a third full with vegetable oil and heat to 190C or until a cube of bread browns in 25 seconds. Fry the scotch olives in batches for 3-4 minutes or until deeply golden and crisp, and the meat is cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Serve with mayonnaise, if you like.