~ Jamaican Curried Deviled Eggs w/Mango Chutney~
The incredible edible egg. That four-word sentence is Don Draper-esque advertising genius. Joe and I have been starting our days with eggs several times a week for almost thirty-five years -- even during 'the dark period' when the food police were patrolling the streets proclaiming the cholesterol in eggs was going to lead to the early demise of us American egg eaters. When it comes to food I love, I believe in living dangerously, and, eggs are the perfect eggs-ample.
If you scout around Kitchen Encounters, you'll find all sorts of really good egg recipes from all over the world, including: how to's for soft-cooking and hard-cooking; fried; baked, scrambled and poached eggs; omelettes, quiches and frittatas; souffles, custards and meringues; egg noodles, egg sandwiches, egg salads, egg drop soup and fried-rice. When it comes to eggs, I've pretty much covered it all, egg-cept for: deviled eggs -- which I'm "fixing" this week.
In the ethnic recipe for deviled eggs I grew up eating, ~ My Devilishly Hot-Russian-Mustard Deviled Eggs ~, the 'secret weapon' ingredient is the very special Zakuson brand of Russian mustard. Just click on the Related Article link below to get the recipe for this Eastern European family favorite. It was as an adult that I encountered the flavorful and colorful world of Indian and Carribean curry (and Thai curry too, but, it's a fresh paste, not a dried powder, so it's not part of today's discussion).
"Curry" is a catch-all English (British) term used in Western cultures to denote stewike dishes from Southern and Southeast Asia, as well as, Africa and the Caribbean. Curry powder (the commercially marketed blend of spices we buy in our American markets) doesn't really exist in any of these places. Hand-made pulverized blends of dried spices, the amounts of which vary to suit the palate of each family or cook are prepared in a mortar and pestle. Dishes called curry, which all contain curry powder (or paste) are relatively easy to prepare and can contain meat, poultry, fish or shellfish. Seasonal vegetables can be included, or, the dish can be made of vegetables (vegetarian). When most Americans see the words "curry powder", they assume that the dish is Indian. I did the same thing until a few years ago.
What's the difference between Indian & Jamaican curry powder & curry?
Turmeric gives both curry powders their distinctive color and slightly-earthy flavor. Jamaican curry powder contains allspice and Indian-style curry powder does not. Indian curry powder contains cardamom and mace, Jamaican curry powder does not. All Jamaican curries contain coconut milk, but only South Indian curries do. Jamaican curries tend to be spicy and sweet while Indian curries are mild and slightly tart. It's Jamaican curry powder, combined with a bit of mango chutney, that gives this version of deviled eggs an unexpected sweet and savory zing!
If you love curry & all things sweet & savory, you'll want this easy recipe:
3/4 cup mayonnaise
4 tablespoons mango chutney
2 tablespoons minced chives
1 tablespoon Jamaican curry powder, hot or mild, your choice
1/4-1/2 teaspoon each: sea salt and cayenne pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons salted butter, melted and cooled
~ Step 1. Hard-cook the eggs as directed in my post ~ A Little Thing Called: How to Hard-Cook an Egg ~. It will tell you everything you need to know to perfectly cook an egg that does not suffer from "green ring-around-the-yolk" (which is caused by overcooking). Just click on the Related Article link below to learn my foolproof method.
Note: In a perfect world, 1 dozen hard-cooked eggs would crack and peel perfectly, but, even with an egg-cooking method as perfect as mine, unfortunately, eggs, like humans, are not perfect. If you are making things like egg, tuna or potato salad, a few nicks or tears in the white won't matter, but, it does when making deviled eggs, so, I always recommend cooking a few more than you need.
~ Step 2. Gently crack and peel the eggs within three minutes of cooking, draining and cooling them in cold water. Using a sharp paring knife, slice them in half lengthwise. Using the pointed tip of the knife, carefully remove the yolks.
Tip from Mel: Use a moistened paper towel to wipe the knife blade clean after slicing each egg and you will not smear excess yolk over the surface or around the sides of the whites.
~ Step 4. Add the mayonnaise, chutney, chives, curry powder, salt and cayenne pepper to the work bowl. Process with several rapid on-off pulses. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, then, turn the motor on and process until smooth, 15-20 seconds. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl again, then, with motor running, through the feed tube, drizzle in the butter and process for 5-10 seconds.
~ Step 5. Place a pastry bag fitted with a medium star tip in a tall glass and invert the sides of the bag down around the glass. Using a spoon transfer approximately half of the filling to the bag. Do not overfill the bag. Trust me: it's easier to pipe in two or three smaller batches than one large one.
~ Step 6. Twist the pastry bag closed at the top and decoratively fill the empty yolk cavities, forming a peaked-mound towards each of the centers as you work.
As an added step, just before serving the eggs, I like to garnish the top of each egg with a tiny dollop of additional mango chutney.
~ Step 7. To store the eggs in the refrigerator until serving time (or overnight), place 10-12 toothpicks in a few of the eggs, spacing them randomly but well apart, so they can support a "tenting" of plastic wrap -- this will keep them moist and fresh without damaging the surfaces. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours, or overnight, until well-chilled.
In a hurry? Don't worry. Be happy. Jamaican Curried Deviled Eggs!
Special Equipment List: wide-bottomed stockpot (for cooking eggs); cutting board; paring knife; food processor; rubber spatula; 10" #3118 Ateco pastry bag fitted w/medium star tip; tablespoon; toothpicks; plastic wrap
Cook's Note: The word "deviled" is used to describe spicy food in general, more specifically: cooked eggs whose yolks are prepared with mustard, pepper and a few other flavorful additions, then returned to the yolk cavities, which are used as portion-sized serving vessels. The verb "devil" means: to combine any food with hot or spicy seasonings such as red pepper, mustard, Worcestershire or cayenne pepper-type sauces, resulting in a "devilish" dish.
You can find my retro recipe for ~ Leftover Ham? Please Pass Me the Deviled Ham Salad! ~, in Categories 2, 20 or 26!
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2015)