These are topped with leftover pulled pork & pickled green tomatoes.
As a Southern woman of a certain age, it’s assumed that you can do a few things well. You can write a proper thank you note. You can drink good bourbon straight. And you can make a solid deviled egg.
I recently found out that one of my most quintessentially Southern lady friends doesn’t know how to do #3, so we remedied that last night.
The great thing about deviled eggs is you can make any flavor as long as you have a tasty base to start with. Mayo helps with that, but mustard goes a long way, as does pickle juice, the secret to All Good Things. Also important: axe the sweet relish most people use. That tip isn’t grandma-sanctioned, but it will give you a better “blank” slate to start with.
18 organic eggs
3 tbsp Duke’s mayonnaise
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp yellow mustard
1 tbsp pickle juice
1 tsp black pepper
salt to taste
paprika or cayenne
- Boil, cool and peel your eggs. (If you haven’t tried the hot-start method, see below. They’ll peel much easier.)
- Slice them in half and put all the yolks in one bowl. (And you don’t have to slice them vertically; Husk does them horizontally, and they are the devil masters.)
- Mash the eggs with a fork and add the remaining ingredients. Mix well. Taste and season.
- Separate yolk mix into 4 bowls (see below).
- For each ingredient, dice a 1/2 cup of your topping of choice and stir it into one bowl.
- Fill a Ziploc bag with the mix and cut a corner off. Pipe some filling into each egg.
- Top each egg with a 1-inch piece of the ingredient used in the filling. Chill until face-stuffing time.
The smoked trout variety at Husk. Can I get a swoon from all my fellow fatgirls.
With 18 eggs, you can make a bunch of kinds, but 4 different toppings works well for 18 eggs. Choose from any of the below, or use whatever you’ve got in the fridge — as long as the ingredient isn’t too sweet, anything is good stuff in an egg.
- Smoked salmon or trout
- Pickled anything – green tomatoes, cucumbers, okra, etc.
- Ham (country or regular, shaved)
- Pulled pork
- Raw tuna (topped with a dollop of wasabi)
- Pimento cheese (what up, Marge)
- Truffle oil
The fresher the egg, the harder it will be to peel when hard-boiled. This method makes them easier to de-shell without totally destroying them.
- Lower your eggs straight from the fridge into already-boiling water.
- Lower the heat to the barest simmer.
- Cook the eggs for 11 minutes.
- Shock them in ice water and let them chill for 15 minutes.
- Peel under cool running water.
As Morg and I chatted today about a blog she reads called Sarcastic Cooking (which is awesome despite the fact they clearly stole my name), I realized how much I’ve been denying this blog in the name of work. Let’s abruptly put a stop to that shall we?
I made this recipe a month or so ago to take to the lake, and as any meat-laced pasta salad is sure to be, it was a winner. This is a recipe from Giada de Laurentis, who, I’d like to reiterate, cannot possibly be eating the food she cooks on TV. She should look like Paula Deen with all the butter and sugar that goes into everything, yet she’s one bikini and dye-job away from being a Playmate. I do not buy it, Giada. Just know that.
Anyway, a pasta salad recipe that uses salami and olives is a slam dunk with me in any capacity; however I have modified this recipe slightly because our Italian sister went ape crazy with the oil. Seriously, I had to strain the pasta salad after I made it because it was swimming in extra virgin. But fear not – proportions have been corrected accordingly, so whip up with confidence.
Red Wine Vinaigrette:
1 bunch fresh basil, stemmed and leaves chopped (about 2 cups)
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil (add more later if too dry)
1 lemon, juiced
1 pound fusilli pasta
1/2 cup hard salami, cut into strips (about 3 ounces)
1/2 cup smoked turkey, cut into strips (about 3 ounces)
1/4 cup provolone cheese, cut into strips
1/4 cup grated Asiago cheese
2 tablespoons green olives, halved and pitted
2 tablespoons roasted red peppers, cut into strips
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta.
- In a blender, add the basil, vinegar, garlic, mustard, salt and pepper. Blend until the herbs are finely chopped. With the machine running, drizzle in the olive oil until the dressing is smooth.
- In a large bowl, toss together the cooked pasta with the remaining salad ingredients. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat. Add lemon juice to taste for acidity purposes. Serve.
Happy Halloween Nummy Num Nums! Despite my intense exhaustion due to the weekend’s celebrations – i.e. Todd’s stupid ayse dressing up as the banker from Monopoly and leaving $1 million worth of fake money scattered all over Blair – I could not let this most high and holy of days pass without a recipe.
I know this recipe isn’t for severed fingers or brain soup or whatever other disgusting “treat” Sandra Lee is no doubt whipping up today, but it is orange and therefore festive all on its own!
The Chef says this sauce is great sauce for grilled chicken, pork or even seared duck. It does sound pretty tangy and delicious, and were we not planning on feasting on some shockingly cheap Chanterelles The Chef procured from Costco for dinner, I’d be demanding duck for All Hallow’s Eve. (Luckily these shrooms are orangish on their own, so we shall be totally “wealthy” and seasonal with our supper either way.)
And if you’re looking to waste a little time today, here’s a little Monster Squad for your viewing pleasure. Yes, this is as scary as it gets for me. OH IT’S SPOOKY!
1 12 oz jar of apricot jelly
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp minced ginger
1/2 tsp garlic minced
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- Place all ingredients in a saucepan and cook on low until the preserves are fully melted.
- Dunzo. Sauce and serve.
You know how sometimes people think hot girls are automatically stupid? Like there’s no way that something can look that good on the outside and not be either dumb or awful on the inside? Well, I think this salad is that hot girl. And this one actually reads Dostoyevsky for fun and got a perfect score on her ACT.
(Incidentally, I would hate that chick.)
What I’m sayin’ is there’s substance here as well as pretty. The avocado and cheese are rich, the tomatoes are juicy and tangy, and the croutons give you the perfect amount of crunch. Dress all that up in Balsamic and drive it around town in your new convertible? It will be like Weird Science in here. And everybody wants that. (Minus Chet.)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tsp honey
3/4 cup olive oil
juice of half a lemon
salt to taste
- Mix all ingredients except oil.
- Slowly add oil while constantly whisking until it emulsifies.
4 tomatoes, chopped
2 orange tomatoes, chopped
2 yellow tomatoes, chopped
1 ripe avocado, chopped
1.5 cups of diced mozzarella
1 cup of fresh croutons
salt to taste
1 tbsp mint or basil (optional)
- Mix together and toss in dressing.
- Eat and bask in the afterglow.
This is by far my favorite salad
The Chef has made to date. And not just because I got to eat it while watching The. Most. Shocking. Bachelor. Finale. EVER. (Which it wasn’t even
– I mean, Brad picked Emily. That girl was so good-looking even I
was in love with her, and I usually only go for Latinas. Sup Eva Mendes.)
But I digress. Whenever you give me roasted mushrooms and tomatoes of any kind, I am happy, and the combination of both with the crunchy walnuts was fantastic. The Chef says the tangy vinaigrette is also great as a sauce on chicken or fish. I just thought it would be highly drinkable… if you’re into that sort of thing.
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
1/2 shallot, minced
zest of one lemon
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
- In a mixing bowl, add everything except oil and combine.
- Slowly add oil to emulsify.
Roasted Veggie Salad:
1 pound portabella mushrooms, sliced
arugula, half of a container
6 *yellow tomatoes, quartered
crumbled goat cheese, a few “sprinkles” (We’re very technical here.)
walnuts, chopped, a few “handfuls”
salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Toss mushrooms and tomatoes in oil, salt and pepper. Lay out on sheet pan and roast for 20 minutes. (The Chef likes to serve these veggies at room temp, and I agree.)
- Toss arugula with dressing and top with veggies, goat cheese, and walnuts.
*You can obviously use red tomatoes if necessary, but these are prettier and have a great flavor, so try to snag some if you can.
**Also fairly obvious is the fact that this picture is not of the same version of the salad written above. Mainly because I was too involved in finding out whether or not Chantal was gonna wig out and deck Brad when he basically denied ever liking her on “After the Final Rose” (She didn’t – LAME.), and I forgot to take a photo. The Chef says he makes this a lot, though, so we”ll replace this one shortly.
The Chef told me “this should have been the first recipe to go on the blog. It’s stupid good.” This got me to thinking about which recipe was actually
the first, and it should come as a surprise to no one
that it was Fat Girl Special Dip
from the resident FG herself. How classy!
I think we can all agree that we’ve dialed up the taste-level here in the last few months, and that is thanks in no small part to all of our wonderful contributors
. JR, the latest to finally give up the goods*, has got a recipe here that appears to be both simple and
sophisticated. In my experience brandy and whipping cream make everything crazy succulent (see Barrett’s Sauteed Shroom Sauce
for proof), so I have no doubt this is as fantastic as The Chef says.
Besides, a girl can’t live on hot sausage and cream cheese alone… Well I guess she could, but it would probably be a lonely, brief existence that ended in heart disease and/or mauling by house cats. And nobody wants that.
4 beef tenderloin steaks (about 2-3 inches thick)
4 tbsp butter
4 tbsp of dijon mustard
2 tsp of Worcestershire
1/2 cup brandy
1 cup whipping cream
salt and pepper
- Season steaks with salt and pepper.
- Melt butter in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Cook steaks 5 minutes per side for medium rare.
- Remove steaks to plate to rest.
- Add mustard and Worcestershire to skillet. (If you wanted to add ‘shrooms here, I’d support you in that effort.) Season with pepper and and stir to combine. Remove skillet from heat.
- Add brandy and ignite. When flame dies, return skillet to heat.
- Add cream and boil for 2 mintues until reduced to a thin sauce. Pour over steaks to serve.
Serve these up with some roasted garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus. Dinner is served.
*It should be noted that The Chef stole this recipe from JR’s cookbook under the guise of visiting sweet Holly Hays yesterday. Let it never be said that Barrett doesn’t have a diabolical side. Especially when recipe-warfare is involved.
Because I always jump when Harmon asks me to, here is a very good, very basic chicken salad recipe. This is the one that Emily thought was so good she ate it out of the cooler the morning after Pat Benatar… after all the ice had melted. It’s 90+ degrees in Memphis in July if you’ll recall, so it must have been pretty darn good for her to risk her health and self-respect just to have a second helping.
4 cups shredded chicken* (rotisserie from the grocery works great for this)
1 stalk celery, sliced very thin
4 green onions, sliced very thin
1.5 tsp fresh tarragon or dill, finely chopped
2 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
1 cup mayo (gotta be Duke’s!)
2 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tsp kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
- Toss together chicken, celery, green onions, and herbs.
- In another bowl, whisk together mayo, lemon juice, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Add to the chicken and mix until well-combined.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. This is even better the day after served on freshly-baked rolls with lettuce and tomato. Just ask Emily.
*You’ll need to cook the chicken before shredding it. Beth and Cat learned that the hard way, right A Dub?
The Chef likes to experiment… wait, that sounds wrong. What I mean to say is that he doesn’t like to cook the same thing twice. Unfortunately he is SOL when it comes to these taters because they are the bomb. (I’m sorry. That term is stupid and incredibly 1998, but it felt right, so I went with it.)
As Alton Brown would say on the hilariously hosted Iron Chef America, “the chef is here to offer his most succulent variations,” and so it is with Nummy. Here The Chef provides both the basics and some extra jazz for when you’re feeling frisky. My personal favorite is the horseradish, but I can lick a bowl clean no matter what kind is on the menu.
Wasabi Mashed Potatoes
6 Idaho potatoes, peeled
2 cup of half and half
8 tablespoons of unsalted butter
4 tablespoons of wasabi paste*
salt to taste
- Cut potatoes in half and place them in a pot of well-salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are easily pierced with a knife.
- Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot.
- In a saucepan, heat butter, half and half, and salt until the butter melts. Pour over potatoes and mash together.
- Gently fold in the wasabi paste*. Season with salt.
*To make the other versions, simply substitute the items below for the wasabi. You’ll want to add them a little at a time until you’ve found the perfect amount for your taste. You can also use unpeeled red potatoes for these recipes for added texture and color.
Rosemary garlic mashed red potatoes
- Rosemary and garlic
- Lemon and thyme
- Goat cheese and chives
- Blue cheese
- Pesto (1 tablespoon)
- Dijon mustard
- Truffle oil
- Roasted garlic
- Horseradish and parmesan
- Cooked crawfish tails
- Fresh dill and sour cream
- Caramelized onions
- Green onions, parsley and capers
I changed the name of this from “Steak Wet Rub” to “Rosemary-Dijon” because the ingredients made me want to eat it but the original title made me want to make some sort of dirty joke. Another wonderful suggestion from the West Coast. From Pitts: I’ve been doing this a lot lately. It holds up better for a ribeye or strip than a filet and also works great on pork chops, tenderloin, etc.
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup dijon mustard
2-3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
pinch of kosher salt
- Combine ingredients into a loose paste. Season steaks with salt and pepper, then liberally brush or rub them with the paste and let marinate 15-20 minutes or longer.
- Throw them on the grill. Watch for flame-ups as the olive oil burns off, and move to a cooler part of the grill if necessary.
I almost always serve them with these potatoes
because Aimee beats me down about making them. The finished product should be kind of crispy on the outside.
The final installment of the sauce trilogy from Barrett. He, Todd and Caroline will find any excuse to put basil in something, but this is one I can get behind. Chef says this one’s great for caprese salads and works well as a marinade for chicken or fish.
2 garlic cloves
1/2 teapoon salt
3/4 cup fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup canola oil
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- Put salt and garlic in a food processor or blender and pulse to chop and combine.
- Add everything except the oil.
- Once basil is minced, slowly add the oil.