Keep track of where you hide those eggs — especially if its indoors

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - What will you do with all your Easter eggs? Barb Randall offers several recipes for using hard boiled eggs, just in case you have more than you need for deviled eggs or egg salad sandwiches.Following a long held tradition, most Christian households will dye Easter eggs sometime between now and Saturday night in preparation for Easter Sunday, the most holy of holidays of the Christian year. The eggs, symbols of fertility and rebirth, represent the Resurrection of Jesus and were officially adopted as symbols of Easter by the Christian church in 1610. In fact, then Pope Paul V issued a special prayer on their behalf.

Early Christians in Mesopotamia stained eggs red in memory of the blood Jesus shed during the Crucifixion. Today people use commercially made dyes as well as natural vegetable dyes to create colorful eggs in celebration of Easter. Easter egg hunts, or hops, are held so children can collect the colorful eggs in Easter baskets, which are lined with plastic grass or straw to represent nests.

In addition to dyed chicken eggs, people hunt plastic eggs filled with candy, such as jelly beans, malted milk balls, chocolate and marshmallows. Chocolate chicks and bunnies are also popular treats. I believe the candy is brought into the celebration because during Lent, the season leading up to Easter, many have denied themselves special treats such as candy.

How many eggs you cook to dye depends on how well you like hard-boiled eggs, how many you want to decorate and how many you want to keep track of during the hunt. You might not think keeping track of eggs would present too big a problem. When I was growing up my mother would hard boil a dozen per child — that was 5 dozen, 60 eggs! Some would crack and not be eligible for the hunt and some would be eaten early so there may not have been a cut and dried total of how many eggs were out there. That was fine when the egg hunt was outdoors but Mom was really serious about us finding every last one when the hunt was held inside.

We enjoyed eating hard-boiled eggs, deviled eggs and egg salad sandwiches so we could consume what we dyed pretty easily.

There is a lot of folklore out there on how to cook a hard boiled egg that will peel perfectly. Some say that fresh eggs don’t peel well and then others say old eggs won’t peel well. People suggested adding baking soda and a pinch of salt to the water to making peeling easier. Suggestions for cooking times were all over the board — one person suggested boiling for 12 minutes, then removing from heat and letting the eggs stand, covered, for another 12. Another person said to boil for 2 seconds then cover and let sit. So how do we get a perfectly peeled hard boiled egg? Martha Stewart, America’s maven of all things in the kitchen suggests this method:

Foolproof Hard-Cooked Eggs

Whatever number

of large eggs you desire

Place eggs in a deep saucepan; cover with cold water by 1 inch. Bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat, cover and let stand 14 minutes. Transfer to an iced water bath; let cool completely.

Cook’s Note

Unpeeled eggs can be refrigerated for up to 1 week

Simple enough. And what will you do with your dozens of hard boiled eggs? You can always eat them with a little salt and pepper or cut and add to salads. But I found a few recipes that should be pleasing to the palate and give you something a bit more unusual to eat, especially if you have dozens of eggs to consume!

Bon Appetit! Eat something wonderful!

Hard-Boiled Eggs Florentine

Makes 4 to 6 brunch or lunch

main course servings

2 (10-ounce) boxes frozen chopped spinach

4 large eggs (or use hard boiled eggs)

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/4 cups half-and-half

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

Cook spinach according to package directions.

Cover eggs with cold water by 1 inch in a 2-quart heavy saucepan and bring to a rolling boil, partially covered. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, 30 seconds. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, 15 minutes. Transfer eggs with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice and cold water and cool 1 minute. Peel eggs and quarter lengthwise.

While eggs are standing, cook onion in oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and browned, about 8 minutes. Add half-and-half, thyme and nutmeg and briskly simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid is reduced by one third and slightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add spinach, salt and pepper and simmer, stirring occasionally, until spinach is heated through, about 2 minutes.

Transfer spinach mixture to a serving dish, and then top with eggs and season with salt and pepper.

Adapted from Gourmet magazine, January 2005

Eggs Stuffed with Capers, Olives, Anchovy and Radish

Makes 12 stuffed egg halves

6 hard-boiled large eggs, halved

2 tablespoons chopped green olives

2 tablespoons chopped drained bottled capers

2 tablespoons finely chopped radish

1 flat anchovy fillet, minced and mashed to a paste

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1 heaping tablespoon plain yogurt

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves

In a bowl mash the yolks and combine them well with olives, capers, radish, and the anchovy. Stir in mayonnaise and yogurt until the mixture is combined well and season the mixture with salt and pepper. Divide the mixture among the whites and sprinkle the stuffed eggs with the parsley

Adapted from Gourmet magazine, May 2000

Curried Egg Salad

I love curried egg salad sandwiches — even simply adding curry powder to eggs, mayonnaise or yogurt and a touch of mustard makes a good filling. Try this recipe though for a more dressed up version. Serve in pita bread with sliced cucumbers and radishes for a pretty presentation.

1/4 cup bottled mayonnaise

3/4 teaspoon curry powder

1/8 teaspoon celery salt

3 to 4 drops of Tabasco, or to taste

3/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste

1 1/2 tablespoons bottled mango chutney, chopped

6 hard-boiled large eggs, chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped celery

3 scallions, chopped

In a bowl stir together mayonnaise, curry powder, celery salt, Tabasco, cumin, mustard, lemon juice and chutney. Stir in the eggs, celery and scallions and season the salad with salt and pepper.

Spoon into split pita bread or onto your favorite bread.

Adapted from Gourmet magazine, March 1991

Randall welcomes your food questions and research suggestions. She can be reached by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling 503-636-1281, Ext 100.

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