When my children were young, I seemed to never have enough hard-boiled eggs for them to dye for Easter.
By the time I set up everything, got all their cups ready and boiled the water for the dye, it was over way too soon. Toward the end of the “fun family time,” they were accusing each other of dyeing more than their share. To drag out the egg-dyeing fun, they would start “double-dyeing” their pretty pastel-colored eggs, and we ended up with mostly mauve- or Army green-colored eggs. That went on until someone unfailingly spilled a cup or two of the dye, and I ended the fun. Those bittersweet memories still live on.
Eggs, of course are available all the time, but if you can get farm fresh eggs in the spring, they’re at their nutritional best. Eggs are one of our most nutritious foods and are relatively inexpensive.
Egg recipes fit into all parts of a menu and are almost endless.
Have you wondered if brown eggs are better for you than white eggs? Nope. The color of the laying hen and its genetics determines the color of their eggs. On commercial farms, hens with white feathers generally lay white eggs and reddish brown hens lay brown eggs. The shell color doesn’t affect their quality or flavor.
In recent years, we’ve seen farm fresh eggs that are pink, blue, dark brown and speckled, which have dark yolks and seem to have thicker shells.
Part of the intrigue of owning your own hen is finding out what color eggs you’ll get when they produce their first eggs.
You probably will be dyeing a few eggs for Easter, and if there are some not being used in the hunt, serve them stuffed or deviled. Deviled simply means using a tasty combination of hot or spicy seasoning, not just red pepper.
Deviled eggs have always graced Southern tables, and there’s been a big resurgence in recent years. Besides the classic egg yolk filling, lots of other interesting combinations are being created.
Stuffed or deviled eggs require small portions of added ingredients besides the egg yolk. If you add too much of any condiment, the filling can be runny. Once you mash the yolks, you need to judge how much mustard, mayo, pickles or jalapeno juice to add; remember, it doesn’t take much.
Besides deviled eggs, you might want to pickle a few. I did not add beets to these pickled eggs as I usually do, but I did add a couple of boiled eggs to the canned beet juice to color them before I stuffed them. Those I garnished with a thin slice of beet.
Corinne Cook is a columnist for The Advocate. Reach her at email@example.com.