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Episode 2: Two YouTubers go head-to-head in this week’s “Chef Artois” tandoori scotch egg showdown

Tune in for a taste of our new culinary miniseries

On the second episode of “Chef Artois”, we head to Marben, a gastropub known for elevating British classics with local ingredients and international flavours. For the past 13 years, Marben’s sprawling patio and its not-so-secret downstairs speakeasy has made it one of the best places in the Entertainment District to enjoy a meal—be it brunch, lunch, dinner or a late-night tipple.

Tonight, Marben head chef Chris Locke joins “Chef Artois” series host Pay Chen to welcome contestants Karen Ahmed and Joel Hansen. Their task: impress Locke by executing a flawless tandoori chicken scotch egg.

Episode 2: Two YouTubers go head-to-head in this week’s “Chef Artois” tandoori scotch egg showdown

This India-inspired twist on a traditional scotch egg swaps out pork sausage for a tandoori-spiced chicken mix. The result is a spice-forward deep-fried delight that pairs perfectly with a chalice of Stella Artois. According to Locke, getting the right cook on the egg is key. Uncooked and the white will still be runny—overcooked and the yolk will be solid. According to Locke, this is a dish that “seems simple, but it’s exceptionally technical.”

Although both competitors are food YouTubers—Ahmed does recipe videos, while Hanson’s followers tune in to watch him eat ridiculous things like pillow-sized burritos—neither has experience cooking today’s challenge dish. Ahmed, though, is intimately familiar with tandoori. The Goa-born blogger has more than a dozen tandoori recipes on her YouTube page. Hansen, meanwhile, is going to have to wing it. He’s apparently terrible at following recipes and didn’t know what a scotch egg was prior to today.

With 60 minutes on the clock, the frenzy of chopping, mixing, boiling and frying begins. Will Hansen’s improv prove fowl? Or will Ahmed falter and end up with egg on her face? It’s anyone’s cookoff to win.

“Chef Artois” is a new limited series that’s inviting diners back inside Toronto’s top restaurants. On this bite-sized cooking show—episodes are a satisfying 12 minutes long—the city’s chefs aren’t doing the cooking. Instead, diners are donning aprons and letting chefs judge their culinary chops.

The series was created in support of Rally for Restaurants, an initiative founded by Stella Artois to help support the restaurant industry as it rebuilds in the wake of the pandemic. In each weekly episode, two Torontonians will step inside the kitchen of a Toronto restaurant to compete for the title of Chef Artois and win a $1,000 prize pack.

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Tandoori Chicken Scotch Egg

Makes 6 Scotch Eggs

Ingredients

The eggs

  • 6 large free-run eggs
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • Ice water

The farce 

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(NB: Farce is a uniform mixture of lean meat with fat made by grinding, sieving or puréeing the ingredients)

  • 375g free-run chicken breast, ground
  • 65g natural yoghurt

The spice mix

  • 10g salt
  • 10g sweet smoked paprika
  • 7g sugar
  • 5g ground turmeric
  • 5g fenugreek seeds
  • 4g coriander seeds
  • 4g cumin seeds
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • Pinch cayenne pepper

The breading

  • 2 eggs whisked with 50ml Milk
  • 1 Cup breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup flour
  • Oil for frying

Method

  1. Make the spice mix. Toast the whole seeds in a pan until fragrant and grind with the paprika and cayenne.
  2. Add the salt and sugar and combine well.
  3. In a bowl, combine the chicken, yoghurt and spice mix and work well until the farce becomes sticky and homogenous.
  4. Place in the fridge to chill.
  5. Prepare the eggs for boiling by bringing a pot of water (2-3 litres) to a boil along with a tablespoon of baking soda. Although not essential, it will make your eggs easier to peel.
  6. Carefully place the eggs in the boiling water and set a timer for 6 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare a bowl of ice water to chill the eggs.
  8. After 6 minutes, remove the eggs and place immediately in the ice water bath and allow to chill for a few minutes.
  9. Peel the eggs carefully. They will be very delicate.
  10. Remove the farce from the fridge and separate out into six 80g balls. Take a portion and, with wet hands, flatten it out into a disk as large as possible in your hands. Carefully wrap this around the peeled egg ensuring that there are no cracks or holes in the farce. Repeat with the rest of the eggs and chill in the fridge.
  11. Next prepare a breading station by setting out three bowls: one with flour, one with breadcrumbs and one with the egg wash. Take the wrapped eggs from the fridge and, one by one, gently roll in the flour, then the eggwash, then the breadcrumbs. The scotch egg should be completely covered in breadcrumbs and you should not be able to see any farce or egg.
  12. Once all the eggs are breaded, they may be returned to the fridge. 
  13. Next, ready your frying pan. Pour oil into a pan with fairly high sides. Ideally, the scotch eggs will fry in oil that comes halfway up the egg. Heat to 350F or until a drop of egg wash bubbles gently.
  14. Cook your eggs two at a time, basting the eggs with the hot oil and turning from time to time to ensure even cooking.
  15. Once the eggs are dark golden-brown, remove from the oil and let drain on a paper towel.
  16. The eggs can now be enjoyed hot, warm or cold as an appetizer, snack or part of a charcuterie board.

Serving suggestion: delicious with pickled vegetables and a tangy relish.

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