A wonderful old standard that can be varied in dozens of ways and infinitely scaled up. For lower-fat deviled eggs, replace the mayonnaise with yogurt. For a richer version, use sour cream or crème fraîche in place of the mayonnaise.
Makes: 4 servings
Time: 5 minutes with precooked eggs
4 hard-boiled eggs (see below)
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, or to taste
1 ⁄ 4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
Paprika or chopped fresh parsley for garnish
1. Cool the eggs quickly and peel them. Halve them lengthwise with a small sharp knife. Carefully scoop out the yolks and put them in a small bowl.
2. Mash the yolks with some salt and the mayonnaise, mustard, and cayenne. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Spoon the filling back into the whites. (If you are making a lot of deviled eggs and want them to be especially attractive, use a pastry bag or zipper bag with a corner cut off to pipe the filling back into the whites.)
3. Sprinkle with paprika and serve or cover and chill, well wrapped, for up to 1 day before serving.
Hard-Boiled Eggs For Deviled Eggs
Fill a saucepan about two-thirds full of water and add the eggs. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat and cover. Let steep for 9 minutes. Plunge the eggs into a bowl of ice water for a minute or so, or drain and run the pot under cold water, then refrigerate or crack and peel.
Recipe from How to Cook Everything: Completely Revised 20th Anniversary Edition (Photo: Aya Brackett)