When I was down south last weekend, we had one amazing picnic lunch. The table was covered with fried chicken (gluten-free and regular), mini pimento cheese sandwiches, rice krispie treats, and some uber mayo-y deviled eggs. I needed to be carted home in a wheelbarrow.
I kind of forget how delicious deviled eggs are when I haven’t had them in a while. And they’re always such a crowd pleaser at parties. So it’s unfortunate that they are one of those simple dishes that is actually a huge pain in the ass to make in large quantities.
When I catered the Canal House book party last fall, in addition to a whole baked ham with biscuits, we served assorted hard-boiled eggs with every topping under the sun. I was running behind schedule – my worst nightmare, especially when I’m already intimidated by and in awe of the people I’m cooking for. But Christopher and Melissa swooped in and suggested not only that we call my sad little hockey pucks “cookies” instead of biscuits, but that I try doing buttered eggs instead of deviled to save time.
Instead of popping out the yolks and whisking them into a sauce, you simply slather each egg with the mayo mustard mixture. The deconstructed end result tastes nearly as good as the traditional version, and you save yourself a little bit of grief after having to peel 100 eggs and dig the shell shrapnel out of your fingernails.
I’m planning a traditional Southern New Year’s Eve dinner. But in doing things in my dandy Yankee New York way, I’ve been messing around with the best possible deviled egg combinations. My favorite topping on the Canal House platter was smoked salmon, so I decided to run with that.
These easy deviled eggs are already simple as can be. But if you’re making them for a crowd, as I will be in a couple weeks, try the buttered technique to save yourself some time, and also ensure that your hands aren’t covered in egg yolk should Danny Meyer happen to be the first guest and try to introduce himself. Yeah, that happened.
Deviled Eggs with Smoked Salmon and Dill
- 1 dozen eggs
- 6 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons extra strong Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill
- 4 ounces smoked salmon finely chopped
Place the eggs in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once rapid bubbles start to form, remove the pan from the heat. Let the eggs rest in the water for 15 minutes. Drain and allow to come to room temperature. Once cool enough to touch, remove the shells.
Slice each egg in half lengthwise. Pop out the yolk and transfer to a medium mixing bowl. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, and dill to the yolks and whisk until smooth. Alternatively, you can puree in a food processor. Taste for seasoning and add salt as necessary.
Arrange the egg whites on a work surface and scoop a scant tablespoon of filling into the center of each half. Top with the smoked salmon and garnish with additional dill.