Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Pimento Cheese Deviled Eggs with Pickled Okra

It's three days after Easter and I'm still up to my eyeballs in hard boiled eggs.  Although, if my little guy had it his way we'd be swimming in hard boiled eggs.  Needless to say, he loves the egg dying part of the holiday and two and half dozen eggs simply weren't enough!

While he faced the dilemma of not having enough eggs in the dying process, I was facing another.  What in the world was I going to do with all these hard boiled eggs.

Well, one simple yet obvious option was deviled eggs.  My entire family is obsessed with them.  Little egg white boats filled with a creamy, tangy mixture comprised of egg yolks, pickles, a little mayo and various other seasonings.  It's no surprise that they disappear as soon as they enter the room.

I knew we would be devouring deviled eggs, not only because the Easter holiday was right around the corner but also because we'd have an abundance of hard boiled eggs to use.  But, it wasn't until a few days before Easter that the pimento cheese deviled egg came into my life.
I was watching a local morning show, which features recipes from various local chefs around the city, and a few days before Easter one of the chefs from The Capitol Bar and Grill was demoing their pimento cheese deviled eggs and they looked amazing.

So, it was set, for Easter we were going to give them a try.  But, you can't have pimento cheese deviled eggs without pimento cheese.  And since this recipe was from the Capitol Bar and Grill I thought it only appropriate to use their pimento cheese in the mix, which is what spurred Monday's post for their pimento cheese.
These eggs were simple and a delicious twist on the classic deviled egg.  Unlike most recipes for deviled eggs, this one didn't call for mustard or pickles.  Instead it used the flavors from the pimento cheese to add to the creaminess and taste, along with a variety of fresh herbs.  And, instead of pickles being mixed into the egg yolks, thinly sliced pickled okra was placed on top for a garnish.  Not only adding a visual appeal, but that crunch and saltiness we're accustomed to from the pickles.

These deviled eggs were nothing short of amazing.  The taste of the pimento cheese was subtle but still evident.  The consistency of the egg yolk mixture wasn't too creamy, which I think was partially due to the cheese in the mixture.  The lemon zest, which I've never used in my recipes, added a nice brightness without adding too much citrus and it really helped to elevate the taste of the egg.  And the garnish of okra.  Not only did the okra add a pop of color, it also brought that salty crunch we expect from the pickles in the yolk mixture which really pulled the whole thing together.
I garnished part of the eggs with okra and part with bacon.  They were both delicious, but after everyone had tried one of each it was unanimous.  They all liked them both, but the eggs with okra edged out the ones with bacon...just barely.

These eggs, like all deviled eggs were a hit with my family.  I showed up to my brother and sister-in-law's with a platter full and they disappeared before I could blink!  

Pimento Cheese Deviled Eggs with Pickled Okra
Ingredients:

6 Hard boiled eggs, halved and yolks removed and saved
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
2 1/2 Tbsp pimento cheese
Zest of 1/2 lemon
Dash hot sauce
1/8 Tsp fresh parsely
1/8 Tsp fresh tarragon
1/4 Tsp chives
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 Pickled okra, thinly julienned
Bacon, for garnish, optional
Paprika, for garnish

Directions:

Using a zester, or small grater, grate the egg yolks into a bowl.  Add the mayonnaise, pimento cheese, lemon zest, hot sauce and herbs and mix to incorporate.  Season with salt and pepper.  Taste, adjust seasonings if needed.

Spoon into the egg white halves.  Top with okra and/or bacon and sprinkle with paprika.

Serve immediately or place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Recipe source: adapted from Capitol Bar and Grill via KATV

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