From Scratch: How to peel eggs for deviling with ease


In case you missed it, eggs have been rehabilitated.

Along with being a complete protein package, eggs are now noted for raising the HDL or "good cholesterol," which lowers the risk of heart disease, stroke and other health problems. Of course, some of us have never stopped eating eggs, giving these articles from food scientists about as much attention as we do the raising and lowering of hemlines.

Easter having just passed, you might have a dozen or so decorated eggs in the refrigerator right now.

Not everyone likes egg salad, but I've never met anyone who could turn down a deviled egg.

In case you don't have a bunch already hard boiled, get your pot ready to begin. Usually, the hardest step in making deviled eggs is peeling the eggs. If you follow these directions, it will be a snap.

Take the eggs out a couple of hours ahead of time to let them come to room temperature. Put them in a pot large enough accommodate them in a single layer. Cover with water about an inch above the top of the eggs. Put the lid on the pot and bring the water to a boil.

Turn off the heat and let the eggs sit covered for 12 minutes. I usually set a timer for this, as overcooking results in yolks with a greenish tint.

Then immediately drain the pot and refill it with very cold water. Let the cooked eggs sit in the cold water 30 minutes or longer before peeling. The cold water will cause the contents of the shell to contract so that they will peel easily.

The above procedure will work well for supermarket eggs, which are generally two to four weeks old and thus have a larger air cavity in the shell due to evaporation. Fresh eggs are notoriously hard to peel. Some cooks recommend adding ½ teaspoon of baking soda to the water before you bring it to a boil to make peeling easier. I have had mixed success with this method, but it may have more to do with my impatience than the method itself.

Below is a basic recipe for deviled eggs. If you want them to look fancy, you can pipe the yolk mixture into the whites with a pastry bag. Feel free to add anything else that suits your fancy. My current favorite ingredient is a little squirt of wasabi paste. A bit of horseradish would be tasty, too.

Deviled Eggs

6 hard boiled eggs

2-3 tablespoons mayonnaise

1 teaspoon mustard

salt and pepper


Cut the eggs in half lengthwise and remove the yolks. Mash the yolks together with the mayonnaise, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Fill the whites with the mixture and sprinkle with paprika.

— Julie Falsetti, a York native, comes from a long line of good cooks. Her column, From Scratch, runs twice monthly in The York Dispatch food section.