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Scotch Egg

In a surprise move, our quest plays out through London rather than Scotland, ranging from the capital’s fanciest food emporium to a prizewinning backstreet pub


LATE AT NIGHT, DRIVING ALONG a motorway, I have the munchies. A Scotch egg calls to me from the fridge of a nearby service station, beckoning a purchase. As I bite at its unyielding shell of parched crumbs and processed meat, a rubberised egg bounces about within. This controversial snack object - both friend and foe - will repeat on me for the rest of the journey, imprinting a lesson sure to last until... the next time.

The perfect pairing – a Scotch egg and a pint, at The Drapers Arms in Islington
Photos STEVE RYAN @_steveryan_

On the flip side of the Scotch egg's reputation for mass-produced salty blandness, it has become a favourite in gastropubs, street food stalls, and creative restaurants inclined to put the word 'playful' on their menu. My hunt is now on for the very best, departing on a stomach-rubbing, chin-wiping tour of discovery through central London.

For context, I begin in the literary haven of Bloomsbury, the home of Persephone Books - a specialist in reprinting and selling long-forgotten novels, diaries and cookery books, mostly by female writers. Among the eclectic treasures on their shelves is A New System of Domestic Cookery, written by Maria Eliza Rundell and first published in 1806. Its pages are home to such historic treats as giblet pie, mock turtle (four ways!), and the first published recipe for a Scotch egg:

Persephone Books
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Find the complete article and many more in this issue of Lonely Planet - June 2018
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