Easter Eggs 

It’s three days after Easter and every time you open the refrigerator those cheerful little bundles of red, orange, purple and yellow are still there. Sound familiar?

There is only so much you can do with a hardboiled egg. Eat them au natural with a sprinkling of salt. Make an egg salad. Slice ’em up and put them on a spinach salad. And there’s the perennial favorite: the deviled egg. The mixture of yolk with mayonnaise and touch of salt when paired back up with the cooked white makes an addicting combination. That creamy texture held in it’s own little container…it’s like the poster child recipe for the incredible, edible egg. 

Except how many deviled eggs can you eat before the flavor flatlines? This year, don’t make plain deviled eggs. Open your spice cupboard and in a matter of minutes you can have a snack that qualifies as artisan. Here are some ideas to get you started:

(Please note, the suggested amounts are just that…suggestions. They are recommended amounts for one egg. This way you can eat it, decide if you like it and then try something different.)

Curry. Yes, curry is a spice blend that has hundreds (if not more) variations. For deviled eggs I recommend using a curry made with the warm spices.  The Spice Merchant’s Daughter has a great curry recipe called Quick Curry Powder with coriander, cumin, fennel, ginnger, black pepper, chile powder, cardamom and turmuric.  In the interest of convenience it’s perfectly respectable to go to your cupboard and pull out the standard curry powder and trust Schilling or Spice Islands, or whoever with their recipe. 

Peel the egg and cut it in half. Scoop out the yolk and place it in a small bowl. Add 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon curry powder and a scant teaspoon of mayonnaise to the yolk and blend until smooth. Add a small sprinkling of sea or kosher salt to taste. Spoon back into the egg white.

Mustard. Mustard is another spice that enjoys a wide range of flavor and texture. There are two approaches you can take with the mustard. If you make your own mayonnaise add mustard powder to the mixture when you’re emulsifying it. Then use your mustard mayo for your deviled egg. Or, add 1/4 teaspoon of Dijon mustard to your mayo yolk mixture.

Mustard loves to be paired with fresh herbs. I made the Dijon mustard version and paired it with chives. Why chives? Mostly because it was the only thing edible that was poking through the dirt in our Northeastern herb garden. Plus I knew the fresh, young chive would be a perfect complement in flavor. I was right. I snipped up one six-inch stem, mixed it in with the mustard, yolk, mayo mixture and was not disappointed.

Chile Pepper. A deviled egg is definitely a Western concoction so think of chile peppers with a warm heat that gently spreads across your palate. I used Ancho chile powder with a little sea salt. To deepen the flavor I added a scant 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne (to the same 1 teaspoon mayo and 1 egg yolk mixture). The chile’s rich variegated brown mixed with the specks of the cayenne’s bright red makes this a very pretty combination.

Wasabi. Okay, I’m going out on a limb here only because I haven’t actually tried a wasabi deviled egg. However, I’ve had wasabi mayonnaise and love it. I think the wasabi mayonnaise (like powdered mustard) would make an excellent and unusual base for a deviled egg.  In mayonnaise, wasabi has a chance to settle with the ingredients and create a balanced flavor. Adding straight wasabi to your deviled egg wouldn’t give it a chance to breathe and you risk eating egg-flavored wasabi instead of the other way around. Just my .02 worth.

There you have it. Four simple but quick ways to dress up deviled eggs. Hopefully, these ideas inspire some creations of your own. If they do please share them here. I know I’m eager to hear about it.