Saturday, November 14, 2009

Deep Fried Deviled Eggs

My workplace held our Thanksgiving meal this past Friday. We hold our dinner early before things get too crazy with personal obligations and people start going on vacation. Our feast this year was amazing! I work with several others who are great cooks (or have immediate family members who are). This year I volunteered to bring stuffed mushrooms and deviled eggs. Word has spread that I'm a food blogger, so coworkers excitedly asked what I was bringing. When I responded with such a common food answer, the universal comment was, "Oh." I decided to try and find a recipe that would surprise everyone - but there was one catch. I don't eat deviled eggs.

I only started eating eggs a few years ago. They just didn't seemed to settle well in my stomach, plus the flavor and texture of the yolk was never pleasing. Today I am still only able to eat them scrambled. My search for a unique deviled egg recipe would need to be something I was confident in serving without having tasted it personally.

I used every search engine known to food bloggers, but was unable to find anything unique. The recipes only varied slightly on the filling ingredients, but were all still basically the classic deviled egg. I made my way over to Food Network to see what their chefs had created. Amazingly, at the top of the list was a recipe by The Neely's. I've heard of this duo, but have yet to watch their show, so they're still newcomers in my mind. However, the recipe of deep frying deviled eggs caught my attention. Everything tastes good fried, right? I decided to go for it and keep my fingers crossed.

I made the deviled eggs over two days. The night before, I boiled the eggs, made the filling, and then stuffed those little eggs silly. I let them sit overnight in the fridge in the hopes of the flavors being able to mingle and the eggs to stiffen slightly (hopefully not falling apart when rolled in a coating and fried). I kept my negative thoughts to a minimum and went to bed prepared to make a killer deviled egg the morning of the feast.

When I arrived at work and presented my share, everyone just assumed the fried deviled eggs were the stuffed mushrooms! They had come out perfectly golden brown and not one fell apart. Once I started explaining what the golden goodness was, word spread like wildfire. Coworkers began snatching them up and bobbing their heads in approval. I was told they tasted like regular deviled eggs, only with a delicious addition that only deep frying can bring. I was very pleased with the results of seeing everyone happy and eager to share their new experience with others for the holidays. I would highly recommend having deep fried deviled eggs on your table this year.

Deep Fried Deviled Eggs

12 eggs*
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp lemon zest
salt and pepper

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
peanut oil

Several hours before preparing the eggs, place the egg carton on the counter and turn the eggs on their sides. This will center the yolk and allow the eggs to reach room temperature.

Using a large pot, fill 3/4 full of cool water and set on the stove. Gently add half the eggs and turn the burner on high and cover with a lid. After about 6 min, the water should begin to boil. Remove the pot carefully from the burner, add a healthy pinch of salt to the water, and allow to sit covered for 14 min. Repeat with the remaining eggs using fresh cool water.

While the first batch is boiling, prepare an ice bath. In a large bowl, fill 1/2 full of cold water and a few handfuls of ice cubes. Once the eggs have finished cooking, use tongs to carefully place the eggs in the ice bath. Allow all the eggs to sit in the ice bath for 30 min total.

Once cooled, begin carefully cracking and peeling the eggs. (Thankfully, the frying process will cover any divots in the egg whites, but still be careful so the whites do not contain any holes.) Cut each egg in half and remove the yolk. In a medium bowl, mash together the yolks, mayo, mustard, lemon zest, and salt & pepper. Use a spoon to fill the egg whites and refrigerate overnight.

Remove the eggs from the fridge while preparing for the frying process to allow them to come to room temperature. In three separate bowls: add the all-purpose flour with a dash of salt and pepper; mix the eggs together; and lastly place the breadcrumbs in their own bowl. Have a large plate lined with paper towels ready to hold the eggs pre- and post-cooking.

Right before dipping the eggs, add peanut oil to a pot that will cover the eggs slightly (about 2 inches deep). Turn the burner to medium-high. Dip an egg into the flour mixture, then coat well with egg, and lastly roll well in breadcrumbs. Using a spider, add four eggs to the spider and carefully add to the peanut oil. The eggs should brown after only 15 seconds. Remove the eggs with the spider and repeat until all are cooked. Sprinkle the eggs with kosher salt and allow to cool slightly before serving.

~Yields 24 deep fried deviled eggs.

~Adapted from Food Network with tips from The Deviled Egg Gourmet.

*Boiling at least 2 additional eggs will allow room for any that crack or do not peel well - or for snacking!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Blog Awards!

As you can see from the side bar, I was very graciously given two blog badges in October. I would like to thank Marillyn from Just Making Noise for the Friend Badge and Kathy from The Colors of Indian Cooking for the Kreativ Blogger Award. I am so happy to be recognized by two amazing foodies - Thank you!

First, I would like to pass on a Friend Badge to the following foodies who often share their thoughts and hilarious comments with me. In no particular order:

Second, I would like to pass on the Kreativ Blogger award to the following foodies who inspire me with their fabulous recipes and photos. In no particular order:
However, review of the rules shows I have something else to share:

Kreativ Blogger Award Rules:
  1. Thank the person who has given you the award
  2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog
  3. Link to the person who has nominated you for the award
  4. Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting
  5. Nominate 7 Kreativ Bloggers
  6. Post links to the 7 blogs nominated
  7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs to let them know of the nomination
I'm not very good at thinking I have anything to talk about, which is one reason why I started this blog - now I have something to contribute to a conversation. But, I will try my best...
  1. I can say the alphabet backwards.
  2. I was a competitive swimmer in high school. My stroke was the backstroke.
  3. I am part Native American Cherokee from my great grandparents.
  4. I am the only person in my immediate family not born in Florida.
  5. I was an extra on the pilot episode of the Nickelodeon show Cousin Skeeter.
  6. I suffer from pretty much every sleeping disorder known to humans.
  7. I am obsessed with cartoons.
Enjoy your awards!

Update: Doreen from Dolly Does Desserts graciously awarded me a Kreativ Blogger badge and Mathea from Peas Love Carrots lovingly shared with me her Blog Love badge.

Thanks so much ladies!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Listada de Gandia

I've been on a purple kick lately. Since the cooler weather appears to be in Florida to stay, I've busted out my purple fleece lounge pants for relaxing at home in the evenings. I also bought some new house slippers that have thick purple and white stripes. And I sprung for a new purple dog collar since I think it looks better on my pup. My purple craze seems to have spread into my diet as well.

The last shopping trip to the local co-op, I kept eying these gorgeous looking mini eggplants, but couldn't bring myself to take them home. I had a bad experience with eggplant last year and have steered clear ever since. These tiny little purple and white striped gems, however, were calling out to me. I went back a week later and they still had some left. I decide to purchase a small handful and try to experiment. I wanted to prepare a dish that was simple so the flavor of the eggplant would come through - and if I ended up not liking it, then I would not have wasted time, money, or my taste buds. I saw some juicy purple potatoes sitting nearby, so I snagged a few of those two.

Cutting into them was like cracking open a geode.

I've been in love with bulgur this year, so I grabbed a cup from the pantry to use as the base of this dish. The co-op did not have a label on the eggplants, but a quick search seems to point in the direction of this being a Listada de Gandia variety of eggplant. The skin is very thin, so no need to peel before preparing. I chose to roast the eggplant and potatoes in the oven to enhance their taste. The salt and pepper made the flavors pop in my mouth.

I was very pleased with this variety of eggplant. My palate recognized this vegetable, but it was slightly milder and sweeter. I was happy I did not choose to hide it under a heavy dish or sauce since I would have lost its pleasurable taste. Both the eggplant and potatoes were slightly crispy around the very edges, but soft and tender in the middle.

I hope the co-op has some left...I'd love to go back for more.

Listada de Gandia in Bulgur

1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup bulgur
4 mini Listada de Gandia eggplants
2 medium purple potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 350*F. Wash the eggplants and potatoes, pat dry. Chop off both ends of each vegetable, then cut into thin slices. Spread the vegetables on a roasting pan and top with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Use your hands to mix together well. Roast the vegetables for 20 min. Remove the eggplant pieces with a fork, turn the oven up to 400*F and roast the potatoes for 20 min.

While the potatoes are roasting...

In a small pot, bring the chicken broth to a boil. In a medium bowl, add the bulgur and pour the boiling chicken broth on top. Cover with plastic wrap for 20 min.

When all ingredients are ready, mix together and serve immediately.

~Yields 2 servings.

~Original by Brie.

Ovenbaked Purple Potato Chips on Foodista