A different type of Easter egg will be available from a Scots Indian restaurant this weekend – and it is set to start a passionate debate over who came up with the idea!
Nargisi Kofta is what The Dhabba owners in Glasgow’s Candleriggs refer to as very probably being the original Scotch egg!
The dish of ground meat mixture wrapped around a hard boiled egg and cooked in rich spicy saucy gravy is a variation of the Persian kofta brought to India by the Mughal emperors.
As a dish it has an interesting and disputed history. If you were to visit India, in the 17th century, locals may tell you their very own Nargisi Kofta was the inspiration for the Scotch Egg.
A concept brought to the UK by returning British soldiers. However, in the UK people would tell you the Nargisi Kofta is a version of the Scotch Egg introduced to India during the British Raj.
Food historian Annie Gray once said of the dish: ‘I think you can pin down the Scotch egg’s introduction to Britain of the late 17th or early 18th century, and I suspect it came from India.
‘Its forebear may well have been the nargisi kofta or ‘narcissus kofta’ — named after the flower’s white-and-yellow petals — which came to India from Persia with the Mughal emperors.’
Dhabba owner Navdeep Basi agrees. He said: ‘The Mughals influences two major regions with their cuisine — Awadh and Hyderabad — the egg is generally wrapped inside meat mince and fried, then served in a brown, yogurt-based gravy.
‘It is the cause of much debate whether Scotch eggs were created when the British came to India and saw the Mughal dish, or if the Mughals gave Scotch eggs an Indian twist. Regardless of its origins, the Nargisi Kofta is a delicious and unique dish and we will be serving up our own version of this dish as a starter for £5.95 this Friday, Saturday and Sunday over Easter.’