Often, the most comforting meals are the best, especially the English favourite of ham, egg and chips – it’s a pub classic for good reason. After all, what can beat the taste of sweet and salty roast ham with chunky chips alongside a perfectly gooey egg?
If you fancy giving this trusty favourite a bit of a twist, I’ve mixed things up a bit below – you’ll discover everything from ham and egg with potato cakes to jerk-style ham and spicy chips. Enjoy!
Ham and Eggs with Potato Pancakes
Turn the English classic of ham, egg and chips into a simple breakfast or weekend brunch. More filling than the proverbial pancake, mashed potato brings a brilliant texture to the batter. If you’re feeling like a full English, there’s no harm in adding a few sausages, mushrooms or whatever else you’re craving to this versatile meal.
- 2 baking potatoes, large
- 20g of flour
- 50ml single cream
- 3 eggs
- 2 tbsp of rapeseed oil, for frying
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 pinch of black pepper
- 8 eggs
- 100ml skimmed milk
- 20g unsalted butter
- 1 pinch salt
- 8 slices ham, small
- Preheat the oven to 170˚C. Rinse the potatoes, pop them in the oven and bake until tender.
- Take out of oven and peel off the skin while still warm. Mash until smooth.
- To make the batter, using a food processor, blitz together the flour, cream, eggs, salt and pepper, as well as the mashed potato. Once mixed, don’t blend any more, as this will overwork the starch in the batter.
- In a non-stick frying pan, warm up the oil and tip in enough mixture to make a pancake, roughly 12cm in diameter.
- Cook the pancake until golden brown on both sides and leave to rest for a while on baking paper. The pancakes can be warmed up again after making the scrambled egg. Repeat the process to make eight pancakes.
- To make the scrambled eggs, crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk together with some salt.
- Using a heavy-bottomed pan, melt the butter in the milk and bring to the boil over a medium heat.
- Pour the beaten eggs into the pan and reduce heat. Gently cook the eggs, stirring intermittently.
- When the scrambled eggs are almost done, warm up the pancakes in the oven. Finish cooking the eggs and take off the heat.
- Serve up four of the pancakes onto plates. Top the pancakes with the scrambled egg and garnish with a few slices of ham. Lay another pancake on top to create a sandwich. Serve right away.
Grilled Ham, Duck Eggs and Spicy French Fries
Got some leftover home-cooked ham? Use it up in this easy-to-make dish. A twist on the much-loved classic, the chips are flavoured with paprika, cayenne pepper and a little salt for a lightly spicy taste. And rather than using the classic chicken egg, I’ve used duck eggs as they’re a little creamier and richer. What’s more, duck eggs contain more omega-3 fatty acids than chicken eggs.
No time to make the fries? I love plating up this delicious meal with McCain French fries (it really is OK to cheat sometimes!). I’m particularly fond of the spicy peri-peri fries in the McCain’s range – they’ll add some kick to your supper.
- 2 large baking potatoes
- 4 tbsp sunflower oil
- ¼ tsp paprika
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 thick slices ham
- 2 duck eggs
- tomato ketchup, to serve (optional)
- Preheat oven to 200˚C. Slice the potatoes into thin chips, pour into a pan of salted water and bring to the boil. Simmer for a few minutes until slightly tender, then drain and leave to steam-dry for a couple of minutes.
- Spoon three tablespoons of the oil into a shallow baking tray and pop in the oven to heat for a few minutes.
- Meanwhile, sprinkle the chips with the paprika, cayenne pepper and a little salt. Gently empty the chips into the hot oil and place the tray back in the oven to cook until golden, shaking them gently midway through cooking.
- Before the fries are done, warm up a big griddle pan. Fry the ham slices on each side until they’re piping hot and have griddle lines on both sides. Move over to a plate so they’re kept warm while you make the eggs.
- Using a small frying pan, warm up the rest of the oil and fry the eggs to your liking. Serve up an egg on each slice of ham and dish up with the oven chips, and ketchup if you like.
Caribbean-Style Ham, Pineapple, Egg and Chips
Sweet and spicy, this ham, egg and chips dish uses Caribbean jerk spices which work wonderfully with salty meats like ham.
- 1kg piece unsmoked boneless gammon
- 1l ginger beer
- 5 cloves
- 5 black peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 4-6 large potatoes, peeled and cut into chunky chips
- 3 tbsp vegetable or rapeseed oil
- 2 tbsp Caribbean spice mix, plus a pinch (see below)
- 1 tbsp treacle
- ½ lime, juiced
- 1 small pineapple
- 4-6 eggs
- 1 green chilli, sliced (optional)
For the Caribbean spice mix
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tbsp black peppercorns
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried ground ginger
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 8 allspice berries
- 1.5 tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ nutmeg, grated
- Lay the ham in a pan, tip the ginger beer over the top, plus the cloves, peppercorns and bay. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover with a lid and cook for roughly an hour. Put the ham to one side to cool, then remove the rind with a knife, leaving a layer of fat on the ham.
- Pour the chips into a pan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Cook for a couple of minutes, then drain and leave to steam-dry in the colander.
- Preheat oven to 200˚C. Empty the chips onto your biggest baking tray, drizzle over the oil, a touch of Caribbean spice mix and a little salt. Arrange the chips in a single layer. Bake until golden, turning halfway through.
- While the chips are cooking, place the ham in a small baking dish lined with foil. Mix two tablespoons of Caribbean spice mix, the treacle and lime juice and brush all over the ham. Pop in the oven together with the chips for the last 20-or-so minutes of cooking.
- Top and tail the pineapple, place it vertically on a chopping board and slice away the peel from the sides. Using a knife, halve it through the core, then chop into 12 long, thin wedges.
- Remove the woody core from each piece, rub over a little oil and scatter with some Caribbean spice mix.
- Warm up a griddle pan and a frying pan with the rest of the oil. Fry the pineapple in the griddle pan on each side until charred. Add the eggs to the hot oil in the frying pan and sprinkle with the chopped chilli, if using, and fry the eggs to your liking.
- Take the ham and chips out of the oven. Slice the ham up into thick slices and plate it up with the chips, eggs and pineapple.
I hope you’ll have a go at creating one (or more) of the above alternative recipes for the traditional family favourite of ham, egg and chips!