Stuffed Eggs, Three Ways (Hard Cooked Eggs, Part 2)
It is Easter Week – and many of us are staring at a dozen (or more) colored eggs in the fridge…
As I said in my last post, there are many things we can do with them – but one of my favorite is stuffed eggs. I like eating them better than eating plain hard cooked eggs. They can be an appetizer, or a side dish, especially if you want to boost the protein in a meal. And I find them particularly handy to bring to a pot luck, or prepare in advance for a buffet.
The classic is Deviled Eggs – but there are variations. I’m going to demonstrate and describe Deviled Eggs first, and then give ingredients for Curried Eggs and Dilled Eggs…. Same method, just different ingredients. This time, I made half a dozen of each kind – half a dozen eggs, which makes 12 pieces, is a useful number. I did carefully measure to give you guidelines, but I usually just go by the looks… which makes it easier to adapt for different numbers of eggs (Yes – I’ll devil one egg, just for myself for lunch.) Back to the usual problem, though – you need to have made them to know what looks right – so – I give you measurements.
They’re really very simple. Cut the eggs lengthwise, and pop the yolks out into a small bowl. Reserve the whites.
Mash the yolks – I usually just use a fork. If you were making more than a dozen at a time, a potato masher might be handy. Then mix in the mayonnaise, and beat it in. You want a soft, smooth texture, that will be easy to use to fill the eggs. I used 2 tablespoons for the six eggs. Then add in whatever mustard you like. I used 2 teaspoons of a grainy dijon, here – and the flecks of mustard seeds are pretty. Taste this, and add more if you like – I’m starting low, because it will vary by both the heat of your mustard and the tastes of the people who will eat it. You can also use powdered mustard – if you do, remember it is stronger, so start with less. And you may need more mayo, as you don’t have the moisture from the prepared mustard.
I made two alternate versions, here. The first is curried. I have, for years, made curried eggs with mayonnaise, just using curry powder instead of mustard, and they’re pleasant. I’m using yogurt, now, though, instead of the mayonnaise. The flavor fits better with curry, I think, and I like the lighter texture. I use 3 tablespoons, instead of two, for the same reasons I do if I use dry mustard. I do prefer full fat yogurt – I think non-fat has a slightly chalky taste, and I like the texture better. Then, I used a teaspoon of curry powder – start with that, or less, then taste and add as you like. Again, this will vary a lot by both your choice of spice, and your tastes.
I also made dill. Again, I certainly could use mayo – but I had sour cream, and dill and sour cream are a very traditional combination. I liked using different ingredients in these – all three are tangy, but in very different ways. It gave the plate a subtle variety beyond the more obvious seasoning. I have only dry dillweed, at this time of the year, so I used 2 teaspoons of it – if I had fresh, I would use about twice as much, and mince it very fine.
Then fill the eggs. If you have a cute pastry bag, or even a cookiepress, you can use it with a tip to make your eggs pretty… I just spoon the filling in… Then I garnish the stuffed eggs. That’s not just for looks… People see these, and expect deviled eggs. If I do any other flavor, I find it is best to have a visual reminder that this is different… Paprika is traditional on deviled eggs – usually a very mild one, used for color, rather than flavor – and that is what many people will expect… Then, logically, I used curry powder on the curried eggs, and dill on the others.
As I’ve said, I often carry these to potlucks. I’ve found a helpful trick for portability, as long as you can do some prep at the site. I put the egg whites together, and replace them in the (washed) egg carton. Then I spoon the filling into a zipped bag, so it stays fresh and I can easily carry it. When I am ready to assemble them, I clip a corner off the bag, and use it as a pastry bag to squeeze the filling into the eggs. I don’t need to use a spoon, and everything stays neat. I don’t normally do that at home, because it usually does lose a little of the filling – but it is so much easier than trying to juggle a plate of eggs en route to a party!
Speaking of plates – this one belonged to my great aunt… isn’t it pretty? And practical – it has indentations for the eggs, so they won’t slide all over the place. Stuffed eggs are coming back into style, after a long time out, and I have seen plates for them in stores, again. Yes, it is a one use item – but if you like serving these, it can be useful. (And this still has our last name clearly marked on the bottom – clearly Aunt Lillian also brought stuffed eggs to events! And wanted to be sure she got her plate back.)
- 18 eggs, hard cooked and peeled
- 2 T mayonnaise
- 2 t prepared mustard
- sweet paprika for garnish
- 3 T yogurt
- 1 t curry powder (and more for garnish)
- 3 T sour cream
- 2 t dried dillweed (and more for garnish)
- This recipe makes a dozen pieces each of three kinds of stuffed eggs.
- Cut 6 eggs in half, lengthwise, Put the yolks in a small bowl, and reserve the whites.
- Mash the yolks. Mix them with the mayonnaise and mustard - adding more of each if desired.
- Fill the reserved whites with the yolk mixture. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika.
- Repeat the process with 6 more eggs - this time mixing the yogurt and curry powder with the yolks. Garnish with curry powder.
- Repeat again, with the last 6 eggs, using the sour cream and dill. Garnish with dill.