A recipe for Mother’s Day: eggs Drumkilbo


Quail Eggs, Eggs Drumkilbo recipe
Ahead of Mother’s Day, our Head Chef Stewart Turner suggests an impressive retro starter for a celebratory feast – eggs Drumkilbo

Eggs Drumkilbo is one of those quintessentially and quirky British dishes. As the story goes, it was invented in the kitchens of Drumkilbo House in Perthshire, for some late arriving guests who had the audacity to miss dinner. Beloved by the Royal Family, it’s essentially a decadent shellfish cocktail with chopped egg and Sherry jelly. My version adds some seasonal blood orange to the mix, with soft-boiled quail eggs and caviar to give it a luxurious twist.

Reportedly one of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother’s favourite dishes, it seems the perfect way to celebrate our own mothers.

Eggs DrumkilboServes 6
  • 200g picked white crab meat
  • 200g poached lobster – diced
  • 3 plum tomatoes – peeled, deseeded and diced 
  • 50g cucumber – diced
  • 50g mayonnaise
  • 50g crème fraîche
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 to 5 drops of tabasco
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper 
  • 1 tbsp chives – chopped
  • 1 tbsp chervil – chopped
  • 1 tbsp tarragon – chopped
  • 2 heads of gem lettuce – some outer leaves removed, and the heart shredded

Sherry jelly

  • 150ml medium Sherry
  • 50ml blood orange juice – sieved
  • 2 leaves of gelatine

To finish

  • 5g caviar
  • 9 soft-boiled quail eggs – peeled and split
  • 6 breakfast radishes – finely sliced
  • A small handful of samphire

First, make the Sherry jelly. Soak the gelatine leaves in cold water for two minutes, then squeeze out any excess water. In a small pan, bring the Sherry and blood orange juice to boiling point. Add the gelatine and remove from the heat instantly. Once dissolved, pour the liquid into a small tray or container, aiming for a depth of between 0.5 to 1cm. Put in the fridge to set for a couple of hours.

When you’re ready to start preparing the dish, mix the shellfish, cucumber, tomato, herbs and shredded lettuce together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the mayonnaise and crème fraîche; season with the Worcestershire sauce and tabasco. Combine the two bowls, mixing together well. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

Remove the the Sherry and blood orange jelly, then return to the fridge.

Arrange the lettuce leaves in decorative glasses or plates and top with the shellfish mix. Dress the samphire with a little lemon and olive oil, then scatter over the top. Finish with the quail eggs, diced jelly and radish, top with a little caviar and serve.

To make the lunch a truly lavish affair, Champagne would make the perfect accompaniment to Stewart’s recipe. Explore our range on bbr.com.