Is it me or do Deviled Eggs seem like an old fashioned hors d’oeuvre? I know people still make them – I’ve seen them at parties – but I just feel the concept comes from one of those dated cookbooks written in the fifties. The books that would tell you how to host a cocktail party by having plenty of Deviled Eggs, a nice ambrosia salad for the ladies, plenty of clean ashtrays strategically placed throughout the room and most importantly, to always make sure the gentlemen have enough scotch in their glasses less they get mad. They seem like a throwback from another era.
Deviled eggs are good. If you like egg salad, you are going to like deviled eggs. And, they are relatively easy to make too. I started by boiling eight eggs. Boiling eggs is always a finesse thing. You can find dozens of instructions for ‘cooking the perfect boiled egg’ on the internet, but it really depends on your stove and your eggs. My mom had taught me to boil the eggs for 5 minutes then turn off the burner and then let them sit on the warm burner for another ten minutes. That works, sometimes (unless you have a gas stove – learned that the hard way). Today I just brought my eggs to a boil and then reduced it to a simmer for twenty minutes. After that, I immediately chilled them with cold water and peeled them. Peeling is not easy either. Usually you get an egg or too that the shell peels right off as clean as a whistle, but then you get the ones that you end up picking off tiny pieces of shells. I know there are tricks for that too. I managed to work through the eggs and while I ended up with a few eggs that looked a little ragged, I ended up with eight fine specimens which I put in the fridge to chill.
Later, I took the eggs back out and cut them in half popping the yokes out and putting them in separate bowls. Recently I had seen a recipe floating about Facebook for Avocado Deviled Eggs that looked interesting. Then, my cousin Clare happened to share the same recipe with me in anticipation of National Deviled Egg Day, so I figured that was a sign I had to make them. I also happened to have a ripe avocado too so it would be easy enough to make. I thought I would also make some traditional deviled eggs as well, so I divided the yokes up equally and then made the filling for each. They came together in no time and when the filling was ready, I scooped it in to plastic bags, cut off the corners of the bags, and squeezed each into the awaiting egg halves. As a garnish, I dusted them with paprika. They came out looking pretty good.
When Lola came home she immediately asked why the house smelled like farts and I suppose that’s the downside of deviled egg production (probably why there are no deviled egg themed restaurants too). I told her it was Deviled Egg Day and then found out she had never had one. It took some convincing, but I got her to try my creations. The regular ones were essentially made with just egg salad. Most deviled egg recipes call for a mixture of mustard and mayo, but I will not do mustard, so I kept it out. The mustard actually brings the heat which is the ‘devil’ in deviled eggs, so with the exception of the paprika, my eggs were pretty mild. They were good though. I think you have to sprinkle them with salt too because the egg whites seem to cry out for it and you are getting so much egg white in your bites that you just need it. The avocado eggs were good too, but not great. I went wrong in two ways here. First, the recipe called for fresh cilantro which I did not have, so I skipped that and fresh cilantro will make anything better. Second, the avocado I used was overripe and you could taste that. Had I used a perfectly ripe avocado and fresh cilantro, they would have been fantastic. My version was just ok. They tasted like a missed opportunity. And cumin.
So just like June Cleaver at Ward’s holiday office party, my deviled egg celebration was a success. I like deviled eggs and if I see them at parties, I ‘ll always give them a try (mustard or not). They’re good food and worth making them fashionable again. On a bigger note, I can now say that every time I make Deviled Eggs, the Chicago Cubs win the World Series. I guess my eggs are the curse busters. And if that’s what it takes to get the Cubbies a title, then I’ll start making them more often. We can ‘Fly the W’ for our Deviled Egg celebration.
Next Up: National Sandwich Day