Last week in The New York Times, Melissa Clark wrote about the plight of the cook in the hours leading up to Thanksgiving dinner. I'm sure most of us are familiar with the day of prep and cooking that leaves no time for a real lunch, where the starved host gets a bit cranky by the time the turkey hits the table. Clark's solution is a a great one—an appetizer and hors d'oeuvres spread to keep both host and guests sated before the main event.
In her article, Clark went with dips to ward off the pre-turkey hunger, but when perusing the pages of Eric Ripert's Avec Eric I came across these Deviled Eggs with Smoked Salmon, an hors d'oeuvre that never fails to please and seemed all-American enough to grace the Thanksgiving table.
Best of all, deviled eggs are hardly a time-consuming venture. A quick hard boil, scooping and mashing of yolks with a mix of crème fraîche, Dijon, smoked salmon, and lemon juice, back into the whites, and then into the fridge to chill until the hungry crowd arrives, leaving you with something to snack on while mashing those potatoes and basting the turkey, and your guests with something to nosh on while you are putting the finishing touches on the meal.
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Avec Eric to give away this week.
- 6 large eggs
- 2 ounces smoked salmon, diced
- 2 tablespoons crème fraîche
- 1 tablespoon sliced chives
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Cayenne pepper
- 1 lemon, cut in half
- Paprika, for garnish
Place the eggs in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring the water to a boil, then cover and remove from the heat. Let the eggs sit in the hot water, covered, for 12 to 15 minutes. Drain the hot water and run cold water over the boiled eggs until cool.
Peel the eggs and cut each egg in half lengthwise. Gently remove the yolks from the center and place them in a small mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves aside.
Add the smoked salmon, crème fraîche, chives and mustard to the egg yolks and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Squeeze enough of the lemon juice into the yolk mixture to season to taste.
Spoon the yolk mixture back into the egg whites. Garnish with paprika and serve.