Senin, 13 Oktober 2008

Quail Eggs with Dukkah

Have you heard of dukkah before? I had, but hadn't actually eaten any until this June, when in Bloomington, US, I had a chance to try a lovely pistachio dukkah made by Cindy Bradley, a local food blogger. Basically, it's an Egyptian dry mixture of chopped nuts (mainly hazelnuts), seeds (coriander, cumin, sesame) and possibly some other spices. It's a popular street food, where fresh wheat bread is dipped first into olive oil and then into the dukkah-mixture. But it can also be sprinkled on salads to give some crunch (say, instead of toasted pinenuts). Apparently it can be used for breading fish and meat when cooking. Quite a few bloggers have already featured dukkah on their blogs - Heidi adds black peppercorns for some heat, Jaden adds chilli pepper for an extra kick, Rosa combines almonds and hazelnuts, and my dear friend Ximena cheats a little :)

The recipe below is very lightly adapted from the British food magazine Olive (January 2007), and makes a small bowl of very simple dukkah. Feel free to play around with spices.

Quail Eggs with Dukkah
(Vutimunad dukkah-seguga)
Serves six to eight

24 quail eggs

50 grams hazelnuts
1 Tbsp cumin seeds
1 Tbsp coriander seeds
25 grams white sesame seeds

To serve:
Maldon sea salt flakes

First you need to blanch the hazelnuts*. Put them on a dry frying pan and roast for 3-4 minutes over a moderate heat, until they're aromatic and slightly browned. Then place on a clean kitchen towel and rub with the towel, until the brown skins come loose. Chop the nuts as rather finely (best done with a knife, as there's a danger of processing the nuts into a paste, when using a food processor).
Place coriander seeds, sesame seeds and cumin seeds on a dry frying pan and toast also for 2-3 minutes, until the seeds start to brown and smell fragrant. Cool, then mix with the toasted and chopped nuts.
Tip into a serving bowl and put aside.
Cook the quail eggs in simmering water for 3 minutes. Drain and run under cold water for a few minutes.
Serve with the dukkah and Maldon sea salt flakes. Each person peels their own eggs, then dips them into salt flakes and the dukkah mixture.

* If you can get blanched hazelnuts (I can't here in Estonia), then simply toast them for a few minutes and then chop finely.

Other recipes using QUAIL EGGS at Nami-Nami:
Small "mushrooms" of quail eggs and cherry tomatoes
Rye bread canapés with wild mushroom 'Caviar' and soft-boiled quail eggs
Soft-boiled quail eggs with dill and lightly salted whitefish roe
Spicy fried quail eggs