It is a truth universally acknowledged that no matter the crowd or whether the spread is homey or sophisticated, deviled eggs will fly off the table. The classic combo of egg yolks mixed with mayonnaise, ground or Dijon mustard, and salt and pepper pleases just about everyone, but Chowhounds add many creative twists.
Will Owen shares his mother's trick: Sprinkling a bit of vinegar over the yolks helps them mash smoothly. His favorite variation is simply mixing the yolks with Trader Joe's wasabi mayonnaise and salt and pepper, then sprinkling the finished eggs with smoked paprika. nimeye makes them with horseradish and blue cheese, and Leper adds harissa along with mayonnaise and salt and pepper.
Jacques Pépin's les oeufs Jeannette "will blow your mind," says PoppiYYZ. Named for Pépin's mother, this recipe is deviled eggs as a warm main dish: The stuffed eggs are heated, stuffed side down, in a pan, then topped with a dressing that begins with some reserved yolk mixture.
Need more flavoring ideas? CHOW has 10 Deviled Egg Recipes.
As for the basics, hounds have a few hard-boiled egg strategies. Don't start with very fresh eggs, which are difficult to peel. goodhealthgourmet ages eggs by leaving them on the counter for 48 hours before hard-boiling. While they're sitting out, turn the carton on its side, advises FoodFuser: The "yolks will find a good center, suspended by their chalaza, which yields more symmetrical open-faced halves."
Leepa steams eggs instead of boiling. "I warm my just out of the fridge cold eggs in warm tap water for about 5 minutes," she says. "Meanwhile, I bring water to the boil in a saucepan. When it boils, I add the eggs to a steamer insert (one of the kind that fits on top of the saucepan), put it over the boiling water and cover. For large eggs, I steam for 13 minutes."
Discuss: your best deviled eggs please