Tasty Bites for Easter Meals | Food

Easter dinner is a special occasion, providing an opportunity for family and friends to come together, celebrate their faith, and give thanks for their blessings.

Traditional dishes tend to find their way onto the Easter dinner table, but no meal would be complete without some sort of deviled egg appetizer. Devil Eggs make good use of hard-boiled eggs that may not have been colored, or even ones that have been dyed and can now be safely reused as food.

“Debonaire Deviled Eggs” from “Southern Appetizers” by Denise Gee (Chronicle Books) teaches home chefs how to make tasty and good-looking eggs.

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)

3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish

2 teaspoons prepared mustard

1⁄8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Sprigs of fresh savory or other herb for garnish

Flip the eggs bottom (widest) side up in the carton. Use a thumbtack to gently poke a hole squarely in each center.

Fill a large saucepan or small Dutch oven with 2 to 2½ liters of water (enough to cover the eggs; use two saucepans if cooking all the eggs at once). Bring the water to a boil.

Use a slotted spoon to add six eggs to the skillet (working quickly but carefully to get them in at the same time); boil the eggs for 6 minutes.

Remove the pan from the fire. Let eggs stand for 6 minutes for slightly soft yolks; add about 40 seconds for firmer yolks).

Remove each egg with a slotted spoon and place it on a tea towel. Repeat with the remaining six eggs. Let the eggs cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes, before peeling them. (Store refrigerated, unpeeled, up to 1 week; peeled up to 4 days).

Peel the eggs under cold running water. Cut the eggs in half lengthwise, carefully scooping out the yolks into a medium bowl. Add mayonnaise, three-quarters of the crumbled bacon (if using), pickle relish, mustard, salt and pepper. Stir to combine (and adjust seasonings as desired). Use a small spoon (or better yet, a piping bag) to pipe the filling into the egg halves. Garnish with the remaining chopped bacon and savory, if desired, before serving.

To note: Large eggs are best used for egg dishes and are easier to eat in one or two bites.

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