My boyfriend is the master of procrastination. To say he gets ‘easily distracted’ is like saying Keith Floyd was partial to the odd glass of wine on special occasions. Sometimes though his habit of poking about in the dark corners of the internet leads to the discovery of gems like this video of ‘disco fry eggs’. How he got there I do not know. I do not need to know.
The recipe is amazing. Oil is heated in a fiercely hot pan like a shallow wok, then green chillies are added and the aromatic bite of capsaicin rises. An egg is cracked onto the sizzling oil and smooshed around, before spices rain down from a hand out of shot. We had to identify them by eye – the pollen yellow hue of turmeric made it easy to spot, while the red and brown ones seemed most likely to be chilli powder and garam masala.
Then comes the best bit, as a bread roll is split and placed cut side down on top of the eggs, before the whole thing is squished down flat with a circular metal thing on a stick. I’ve no idea what this implement is, or once was, but it seems to serve its purpose here very well. We used the obvious substitute – a potato masher.
The whole eggy, bready mix is then flipped and squished, flipped and squished again. There is basically a huge amount of flipping and squishing. Once cooked, and very importantly, really properly squished, the pancake shaped mixture has developed lovely crisp bits around the edge, while there’s still soft, fluffy eggy bits inside. The spices have cooked out but are still boom! definitely there in refreshingly large quantities. At the end the whole thing is split in half and folded to serve.
We basically tried to follow the recipe as accurately as we could from the video, trying to move quickly and therefore making a right mess in the process. There is a pair of trousers which I fear will never recover from ‘turmeric-gate’. The flipping provided some comedy moments. The end result was pretty special though. The only changes we made were to garnish it with coriander because that just made sense and some finely chopped spring onions because they go on everything in this house.
I shall not hesitate to claim that this is clearly the best hangover breakfast of all time that no-one seems to know about. It has eggy foundations, it contains chilli and spices, it’s a bit filthy, and there are laughs to be had whilst making it. The hangover boxes are ticked. The absolute best thing about this though is that I think the bread and the folding clearly qualifies the dish as a sandwich. An Indian eggy bread sandwich. Joy!
Mumbai Disco Fry Eggs (serves 1)
One thing you don’t need to worry about is the mixture in the pan looking a mess. It will taste brilliant, I promise. Anyway, the messy edge bits give you the crispy bits of joy that you desire.
2 small soft round rolls, 1 large soft round roll, or 1 hot dog bun, split
3 green chillies, sliced (or more or less to taste)
Finely sliced spring onions
Oil, for frying
Heat a frying pan or skillet over a medium high heat and add some oil (couple of tablespoons should do it). When hot, add half the chillies and fry briefly. Add the eggs and break them up a bit. Add the rest of the chillies, then sprinkle on a generous pinch each of chilli powder, garam masala, turmeric and salt.
Put the split bun on top, drizzle over a little more oil, and add another dusting of all the spices. Use a potato masher or similar shaped implement to press down on the buns so they are smooshed into the egg. When it’s fairly flat, flip it over and squash down again. Flip again and squash, then flip again and squash. The final result should be flat as a pancake and crisping at the edges.
Cut the eggy pancake in half down the centre. Fold each half into a sandwich, put on a plate, sprinkle with coriander and spring onion, and serve.