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Cuisine: Appetizers

Deviled Eggs – Classic Recipe And Twists

Deviled Eggs – Classic Recipe And Twists

Deviled Eggs

The mid-winter point is like an on switch for the ducks and chickens. We went from buying a few dozen eggs between Christmas and the end of January to having five dozen eggs in the fridge. The dogs are having scrambled cracked or frozen eggs for breakfast. What do you do when you have a lot of eggs all of a sudden? Deviled eggs.

I love this traditional Deviled eggs recipes and also love variety. There are five twists to the basic recipe included below.

Tips for Deviled Eggs

    • If the egg yolks are dark around the outside they’ve been overcooked. Cut the time by three or four minutes next time you boil eggs.
    • If you’re making a lot of Deviled eggs you can make the filling process easier. Fill a zippered plastic bag with the filling, cut a small piece out of a bottom corner, and squeeze the filling into the whites.
    • If a white won’t sit well you can take a small slice off the bottom to make it flat.

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How Long Do You Boil Eggs?

I use a simple method for boiling eggs. Place a single layer of eggs on the bottom of the pan. Cover the eggs with cold water. The water should be two inches higher than the eggs. Bring the water to a full rolling boil. As soon as it reaches that state, remove the pan from the heat and set the timer.

For hard boiled eggs, follow these times:

  • Duck and extra large chicken eggs – 15 minutes
  • Large eggs – 12 minutes
  • Medium eggs – 9 minutes

Dump the hot water and fill the pan with cold water until the water continues to run cold out of the pan. It will take a minute to cool the pan. I like to peel the eggs immediately.

I use older eggs for hard boiled to make peeling easy. If you can hear the egg rattle inside the shell and you know it’s not spoiled, the egg should peel easily. The egg is dehydrating and pulling away from the shell.

Add these variations to the crumbled yolks.

Avocado Deviled Eggs – 1/4 cup mayo, 3 tablespoons mashed avocado, 1 teaspoon salt.

Ranch – add 1 tablespoon dry ranch dip mix to 1/4 cup mayo.

Bacon & Blue Cheese – use the Bacon & Blue Cheese dip recipe or mix 2 tablespoons each mayo and the dip.

Pizza – 1/4 cup mayo, 2 tablespoons finely chopped pepperoni, 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, 1/4 teaspoon pizza seasoning (or Italian seasoning). Mix all together.

Pesto – 1/4 cup mayo, 1 teaspoon mustard, 1 tablespoon well-drained pesto, 1/2 teaspoon salt.

 

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Bacon & Blue Cheese Dressing

Bacon & Blue Cheese Dressing

Bacon & Blue Cheese Dressing

My all-time favorite dressing is Bacon & Blue Cheese. We use it as a salad dressing, with wings, and even on burgers and steak. This is another recipe that’s easy to adjust to your tastes. One cup each of blue cheese and bacon crumbles makes a chunky, thick dressing. Blue cheese can be quite tangy, especially if it’s aged so adjust the strength of the blue cheese flavor by adding a smaller amount. Add more after a few hours if the flavor isn’t strong enough.

Watch the bacon. If you have a bacon with little or no flavor, skip it. It’s going to be completely lost here. A good bacon will hold its own and add flavor to this Bacon & Blue Cheese recipe.

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Bacon & Blue Cheese Goes With…

As I type this I have Baked Beans in the oven, bread almost ready for the oven, and venison and pastured chicken thawing in a sink of cold water. It’s a cooking day so I’ll nibble all day as I taste the beans, have a bite or two of venison, and a cup of chicken and rice soup. I’ll cut up broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, bell peppers and celery for a veggie tray and use this dressing for the dip. As dip, I like this thinned with a little milk. For steak, chops, burgers and baked potatoes, I leave it thick. The veggies will help balance everything on my plates today.

Lower Fat & Calories

This recipe for Bacon & Blue Cheese dressing isn’t low fat by any means. You can lower the fat by using low fat mayonnaise and sour cream.

You can chop partially frozen bacon into quarter-inch cubes and pan fry it to lose a little more fat. You’ll still have all the meat and flavor.

No matter what you do, it’s still a high-calorie food but moderation makes a difference.

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Hot Pepper Wine Jelly – Appetizers

Hot Pepper Wine Jelly – Appetizers

Hot Pepper Wine Jelly

Hot Pepper Wine Jelly, also know as Christmas Jelly because of it’s beautiful red and green peppers, is my favorite holiday party appetizer. It’s also my favorite Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day and curled up on the couch watching a movie during a nor’easter appetizer. The zing from the peppers combined with the sweet sugar and the richness of sour cream is awesome.

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How Hot?

You can adjust the heat level with your choice of hot pepper. Heat is rated with the Scoville Heat Scale. I personally wouldn’t go higher than Jalepeno because I’m a heat wimp. If you’re using this recipe for a party appetizer I suggest putting a small sign in front of the serving bowl so everyone knows it has some degree of heat. I haven’t made this jelly without hot peppers. If you have I’d love to know how it tastes.

  • Bell peppers
  • 1,000 to 2,000 Poblano and Ancho
  • 2,000 to 5,000 Jalepeno
  • 100,000 – 350,000  Habenero

I make this jelly in late summer and hot water bath can it. To make and serve as an appetizer in the next couple of weeks you don’t need to can it. I still ladle it into pint canning jars and cover it with a canning lid and ring. The lid will seal but the jars should be stored in the refrigerator.

Serving Suggestions for Hot Pepper Wine Jelly

This recipe makes two pints. I use one pint for an eight ounce block of cream cheese. Place the cream cheese on a wide plate and scoop the jelly over it. Ritz type crackers are my favorite flavor of cracker to serve with this jelly but they break easily under the pressure of a knife spreading cream cheese, so be aware of that. A firmer cracker helps keep this convenient as an appetizer in a crowd.

I keep a few dip spreaders on hand to switch out in case jelly gets on them.

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