Every other restaurant in this town serves some form of deviled eggs. I don’t know why these people think their deviled eggs would be better than your grandmas’. The eggs are free range and the pickled acoutrement is organic and handcrafted but those elements don’t make them taste better than my Granny’s or Aunt Shirley’s and they certainly don’t taste better than mine. But for some reason someone at your table will insist upon ordering them and pay $8 for three egg halves. Jaded at this point, I’d rather see a more interesting turn on Southern staples, like deviled ham that tastes remotely palatable, let alone delicious. Hugh Acheson actually does that. Or a transcendent ham biscuit.
It’s like living a stereotype, so you can imagine my shock when I opened this spring’s edition of the Garden & Gun showcasing a new deviled egg recipe. I was tempted to roll my eyes but Jim insisted that this was a recipe we needed to do. So he did. And he’s worked to refine the recipe and he was right, it’s a real winner. They disappear faster than the traditional ones. And dare I say it’s a recipe you need to have, not to replace Grandma’s but as an alternate, a better one at that.
Deviled Eggs with Sriracha and Smoked Salmon - Adapted from Trevor Higgins - Serves 30
2 dozen eggs
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tsp. whole grain mustard
6 tbs. Sriracha sauce
3 tsp. rendered bacon fat
2 oz. smoked salmon
3-4 sprigs tarragon
1/4 cup vinegar
Place the eggs in a deep pot and cover with water, add in the vinegar. Bring the water to a boil, let boil for 1 minute, then turn off the burner and let the eggs sit covered for 12 minutes. When finished cooking plunge the eggs in to an ice bath for 5 minutes, then peel the eggs. Halve the eggs lengthwise and remove the yolks. Combine the yolks, mayo, mustard and bacon fat, season with salt and pepper. Fill a piping bag or a sandwich bag with a corner cut off and fill the egg halves with the filling. Top with a small sliver of smoked salmon and a tarragon leaf.