Sides

eighteen

Deviled Eggs

For those of you who’ve eaten a deviled egg (hard boiled, sliced in half, yolks mayonnaise-y and sunflower colored, just a dash of paprika for spice) I’m guessing you thought they were a retro food, right? The bright color, the cholesterol and the bite-sized cocktail party vibe they send out all seem to point to a 50s and 60s origin. Well, in fact, stuffed eggs date back to the 13th Century! While the name came along in the 18th Century, early medieval cooking texts list recipes for hard cooked eggs stuffed with raisins, cheese, and sweet spices like cloves and cinnamon that were then fried and served with a verjuice sauce. Not exactly the deviled eggs your grandma brings to the family picnic, am I right?

I’ve adapted this recipe from Martha Deane’s Cooking for Compliments, published in 1954 “…for the woman who practices the creative art of cookery with an eye on budget, time-saving, and gourmet results” That’s only my goal in life, Martha, no big deal. She does in fact suggest to deep fry her eggs, but I opted out in hopes of living past 30 without having a massive coronary.

Eggs

– 7 eggs, hard boiled* and peeled

– 1/4 cup mayonnaise

– 1 tbsp spicy mustard

– salt and pepper

– paprika for garnish

Slice the eggs in half longways and pop the yolks out into a bowl. Add mayo, mustard, salt and pepper. Smash around with a fork until smooth. Add more seasoning if you so choose. Spoon the filling into the open holes in the eggs and sprinkle with paprika. Chill for a while if you’d like, and eat in the next day or so. But if you happen to forget about them or have just had your fill of eggs, you can always throw them at the car of someone you don’t like (I’ll just leave that reference for anyone who’ll appreciate it..)

* how to hard boil eggs: place eggs in a single layer in a saucepan with just enough water that they are covered. Place pan on stove and boil. Immediately after, lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and place eggs in ice water for about 5 minutes. Peel underwater for best results.

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Sides, Snacks

three

Canapes

For those who have never been sure exactly what canapes are, they are bite-sized decorative hors d’oeuvres: the bottoms are small crackers, circles of bread or puff pastry, filled with various toppings. (Fun fact, the word “canape” comes from the french word “sofa”, as the toppings sit on the bread or pastry like people on a couch). A standard feature at cocktail parties of the 50s and 60s, canapes were often made by cutting pieces of bread into circles, deep frying or toasting them, then piping out flavored cream cheese or compound butter, with a finishing touch of chopped vegetables or meats. My version of canapes do not have the creamy center or the deep fried crunch, but rather are baked puff pastries in a mini-muffin pan with lighter, more flavorful fillings. This recipe is extremely easy to follow, and the filling possibilities are endless. Here are the two kinds I created.

#1

– 1/4 sheet of puff pastry dough (you can make your own as well, the ready-made one is just simpler)

– 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

– 1/8 cup dried cranberries

– 1/2 finely chopped granny smith apple (any kind works, but I find that sour green apples are the best compliment to the cheese)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry until very thin, about 1/8 inch. Using a 2 inch wide biscuit cutter, cut as many circles as you can. Place circles into a greased mini-muffin pan. Fill each pastry circle with cheese, cranberries, and apples. Bake 15 minutes, checking every 5 to ensure even browning.

#2

– 1/4 sheet of puff pastry dough

– small fillet of grilled salmon

– 1/4 ripe avocado, diced small

– 2 tbsp sweet chili sauce

Follow above recipe for rolling and baking instructions, then fill with salmon, avocado, and sauce.

#1

#2

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