I'll bet you are wondering why the title of this post is the "prettiest" deviled eggs. Seems like it should be the "yummiest" deviled eggs, or the "tastiest," right? Well, the thing is that pretty much everyone has their own special way of making deviled eggs that their family raves over. Just like potato salad. You can share your recipe for potato salad, but when someone else makes it, they are apt to say "Well, this isn't right! There is no sweet pickle in this recipe!" Or whatever. Because every family gets used to their own way of making certain dishes such as potato salad and deviled eggs. So, if I titled this post "The Yummiest Deviled Eggs," you'd probably harumph (and rightly so) and think, who is she to tell me that her deviled eggs are yummier than mine? I would never praise the virtues of my deviled eggs over someone else's family recipe. Deviled eggs are just too personal. Thus, this post really isn't about a recipe for deviled eggs, as much as it about presenting them.
I love bringing deviled eggs to parties and get togethers in the spring and summer. Everyone loves deviled eggs, but for some reason, no one else usually brings them. At a big get together, there might be four different pasta salads and three cheesy potato casseroles and several plates of brownies, but there probably won't be another platter of deviled eggs. So they make a great party food to bring along. Also, I have a weird thing about collecting deviled egg platters. I simply can't pass up a cute deviled egg platter, so I have quite a few of them. How many? Well, let's just say that my older son ribs me about how many I have, remarking that no one makes deviled eggs enough to use so many plates. But, no matter. The platter in the photo above is one of my absolute favorites. It's white and a simple rectangular shape, but it's big. It holds 24 deviled egg halves, which is a great number to bring to a picnic or gathering.
But, of course, there is no law that says that you have to use an actual deviled egg platter to serve deviled eggs. That's just my preferred way of serving them. This post is really about the presentation of the eggs themselves, and how to make them look pretty and also appetizing.
Ok, here is my first secret. Bacon. You know how bacon seems to be in everything these days, including desserts at upscale restaurants? Well, turns out that bacon tastes really great in deviled eggs, too! To the yolks of a dozen hardboiled eggs, I added about six slices of bacon, cooked and then crumbled up. I did save a few spoonfuls of the bacon crumbles for garnish. As far as the other ingredients, I mash up the egg yolks with Miracle Whip and yellow mustard to taste, and I like to add a little finely minced onion and celery, as well as a dash of pepper and a dash of celery seed. I don't ever use salt in my deviled egg mixture, because if you are using any vegetables at all (I'm using the onion and celery), the salt will just bring out the water in the vegetables and the whole mixture will become watery after awhile. So, no salt. If you're using the bacon, that will add plenty of saltiness to the mixture, anyway. Fold the bacon in after you've mixed all of the other ingredients together.
The second secret to pretty deviled eggs is to turn the mixture into a big Ziploc baggie. I use one big enough to hold the entire batch, but you could also fill and refill if you only have smaller baggies. Seal the bag at the top, and then cut a SMALL hole in one bottom corner of the baggie. Not tiny, but not huge. I'm going to be honest with you here. In the picture below, the hole in my bag is TOO BIG. I messed up but had my son take the pictures anyway. Once he took a few pictures, I actually cut the OTHER corner of the bag using a smaller hole, and finished the eggs that way. Start small, and if the hole is too small, increase it just a bit.
All you do is squeeze the filling into the eggs from the bag through that hole, just like you might have done with cupcake frosting. Using the bag is amazingly quick and easy, and best of all, you get eggs that look like they came out of a professional deli or something. It's easy to get the perfect amount of filling in each egg, and if you kind of pipe the filling in circles, the filling will look pretty and poufy. Yes, that's a professional cooking term. The bag also makes it easy to go back and add a tiny bit more to various eggs to even them all up and make sure that you use all the filling. And, of course, the other great thing is that bag is then tossed in the wastebasket! Love that!
Once all of the eggs have been filled, I take a small spoon and just smooth the top of each egg just a little bit. Then I sprinkle a tiny bit of paprika on each egg for color, and top with a few crumbles of the bacon. The result is deviled eggs that both look and taste great!
Oh, a final tip. Only try the bacon idea if you are sure that all of the eggs are going to be eaten that day. While the bacon tastes fantastic in the deviled egg mixture, the crunchy texture doesn't hold up longer than a day. By the next day, the bacon (even the bacon on top of the eggs) will get kind of soggy and it won't be crisp and delicious. So these are definitely one-time-only eggs. But they are soooo worth it. You know, I wasn't actually planning on doing deviled eggs for Memorial Day this year, but looking at these pictures is making me consider making a batch! Why don't you make a batch, too? Come on, you know you want to! Happy deviling!