Memorial Day marks the first official day of summer. That means it’s time to get together with friends and family at picnics, graduations and family reunions. No Southern picnic is complete without deviled eggs. Every Southern hostess understands the importance of serving deviled eggs when hosting a party and owns several deviled egg platters so she can properly display this favorite food.

The history of deviled eggs can be traced back to ancient Rome where boiled eggs were served with spicy sauces and served as a starter to a fancy meal. Stuffed eggs grew in popularity throughout Europe in the 15th century and found their real home in the South in the mid 19th century.

If you want to show off all the new cooking skills that you learned while social distancing watching cooking shows and YouTube videos, there are many variations to this national treasure: smoked salmon, with lox, capers and dill; Mexican, by adding mashed avocados to the yolks with salsa to give it a guacamole twist; California roll, by crowning it with crab, cucumber and sesame seeds and mixing it with wasabi; Georgia peach, by adding yogurt, cream cheese, ham, peach preserves, apple cider vinegar, and Dijon mustard.

If this nouveau version of deviled eggs is blasphemous to your ears, I have included two traditional Southern versions of deviled eggs.

Bon Appetite!

Traditional Southern Deviled Eggs

  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/2

  • teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon sweet pickle relish
  • salt and pepper
  • paprika

Put eggs in a medium sized saucepan, cover with water and cook over medium heat and bring to a boil. Boil for three minutes and turn off heat. Let sit for five minutes. Run cold water over the eggs and peel. Cut each egg in half lengthwise and remove the yolks. Put them into a mixing bowl with the mayonnaise, mustard, relish, salt and pepper. Mash with a fork. Spoon the yolk mixture back into the egg cavities. Sprinkle each egg with paprika and place in desired platter.

Deviled Ham Stuffed Eggs

  • 6 hard cooked eggs
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 4-ounce can deviled ham
  • grated onion
  • mayonnaise
  • Dijon mustard

Cut eggs in half and separate the yolk from the egg whites. Mash the yolks with the salt, pepper, ham, mayonnaise, mustard and grated onion. Spoon mixture into egg whites. Serve on your favorite platter with your favorite picnic foods.

Send any recipe requests, comments or questions to Chef Mary at: msgolde@yahoo.com

Chef Mary Goldman is living the good life in Greeneville, Tennessee, surrounded by beautiful mountains, an abundance of fresh produce, herbs, honey and locally gown meats — a chef’s dream!

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