The Slowcook at Spydog Farm The Slowcook at Spydog Farm

Perfect Deviled Eggs

May 18th, 2020 · No Comments · Posted in Blog

We love deviled eggs, but there’s so much anxiety around the issue of the shells peeling cleanly from the hard-boiled eggs. It’s such a disappointment when they don’t, leaving big, unsightly gouges in the those perfectly formed whites. The reason for this–scientifically speaking–is because of membranes–called chalazea–that attach the egg to the inside of the shell called . This is supposed to keep the egg centered and safe while a chick is developing. Chick or no, the egg will cling to the shell when fresh. Only as the egg gets older do these membranes degrade and the clinging ease.

For this reason, common wisdom held that it was better to use old eggs for hard-boiling (poaching is just the opposite–use eggs as fresh as possible). But how are you supposed to know how old those eggs are in the carton you just purchased?

We’ve tried all kinds of methods for hard-boiled eggs to solve the peeling problem. For a while we were using a complicated process recommended by Julia Child that involved immersing the cooked eggs alternately in hot, then iced water. That did not always work.

But now we’ve discovered a way to hard-boil eggs that always peel perfectly. We don’t care how young or old our eggs are any more.

To hard-boil six to eight eggs, mix six cups water with 1/4 cup distilled vinegar and 1 Tablespoon salt. Bring to a boil. Gently place the eggs in the boiling water and cook at a slow boil uncovered for 14 minutes. Then drain the eggs and run them under cold water in the pot until they are cool to the touch. Peel. You’ll be amazed how easily the shells are removed.

Now you are ready to make whatever deviled eggs you prefer. My favorite has a Szechuan kick:

After slicing the eggs in half lengthwise, display the whites on a plate lined with fresh salad greens. Mash the yolks in a mixing bowl, then blend with 3 Tablespoons mayonnaise (or to taste), 1 Tablespoon garlic chili paste and a pinch of salt. In a skillet, toast 1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns, then grind to a fine powder in a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Add this to the yolk mix.

Spoon or pipe the yolk mix into the whites and garnish with chopped chives.

Voila! A perfect start to your next virtual cocktail party.

Stay safe, y’all!


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