This is a two-part recipe. Its light on kelp but its one of my favorites and I’ve been asked for the recipe many times, so here it is as promised.
I keep two jars of pickled eggs in my refrigerator all the time-- they are a perfect light, protein packed snack. I frequently eat them for “lunch” gobbling them while standing at the kitchen counter or on the boat on the farm. It's fun to dress this recipe up a bit and devil the eggs. These bold little egg boats are tasty and so pretty.
I started getting enthused with hardboiled eggs as the perfect ecologically responsible quick snack while doing field work at College of the Atlantic. Eggs are inexpensive, sustainably raised, locally sourced, delicious, and healthy! As a gluten free person (FML) many breakfast foods are off the table for me. Not eggs-- and they come in their own biodegrable packaging!! They were easy to take with me on research trips or recreational adventures.
Anyone who boils eggs until the yolks are green is a criminal and should be reprimanded firmly. I like a 6-7 minute boil on my eggs-- the yolk is still jammy and soft, but fully cooked. Divine. I put kelp in my brine because it adds a delicious light umami flavor and of course-- minerals and vitamins. Get it. Get it. Get it.
Beet pickled eggs are an out-of-fashion vintage bar-snack, many taverns and saloons used to have a barrel in the corner where pink eggs bobbed in a ruby brine. Customers could spoon one up enjoy a salty treat. If this recipe just totally unnerves you, I respect that. Move on and don’t yuck our yum.
3 garlic cloves
Small handful of sugar kelp
1 cup water
1 cup apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoon salt (I end up adding more but start here)
1 teaspoon pickling spice
Half teaspoon pepper corns
half teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon of mustard
12 hard boiled eggs
1 chopped fresh beet
- Simmer garlic, kelp, water, vinegar, salt, spices for 10 minutes.
- Give eggs a six - seven minute boil while the brine is simmering.
- Let the brine and eggs cool. Taste the brine and adjust spices as you like.
- Peel the eggs.
- Put chopped beets, mustard and dill in a quart sized mason jar.
- Pour in brine over a strainer when its cooled a bit. Be careful not to pour fast and shatter the glass. I pour a little in the glass and swirl it to distribute the heat.
- Pick out the garlic and throw it back in the brine!
- Brine should turn ruby color. I can fit 10 eggs in a quart size mason jar.
- I always have too much brine and a few eggs that go in a second jar. It’s not the most elegantly proportioned recipe. If you want to judge me go ahead.
Alright you devil. Wait three days and your eggs are pickled and ready to get wild. Lets kick this up a notch!
Tiny splash of vinegar
Fish some ruby eggs out of your brine. Slice delicately in half. Tenderly scoop out the yolks and put them in a bowl thats bigger than you think you need. Try to maintain the integrity of the egg without tearing the white (which should be PINK).
- In your bowl, put a small amount of mayo, fancy mustard, a little sip of vinegar (I like rice vinegar) and freshly ground pepper.
- MASH with a fork until very smooth.
- Adjust the seasonings/mayo here. I almost always add too much mayo, and then regret it. Don’t make my mistake.
- If you are the type of person who likes that deli-counter look for the yolk, you probably already have a pastry bag with a extruding tip. I am a type of person that loves that deli-counter look but is too cheap to buy the pastry bag, tries to do it with a plastic bag, ultimately fails, and still refuses to give up. As humans we are all doomed to repeat some mistakes in life, this is one of mine.
- If you have a pastry bag, you already know how to use it. If you are trying the plastic-bag-corner-cut trick, I wish you luck. If you are simple and straightforward and unashamed of spooning the yolk back in without flair, I commend you.
- Once your little boats have been filled with the delicious golden mash, set about toasting your kelp.
- I put mine in a convection toaster oven on low, and I stand in front of it THE WHOLE TIME. It is so easy to forget about it in there, and the next thing you know the smell of mineral smoke fills the room. Don’t even look at your phone. Just breathe. Once the kelp is toasted and crispy, I rub it vigorously in between my clean hands to create flakes.
- Sprinkle the kelp flakes all over the deviled eggs.
- I like to toss capers and dill flowers on top as well.
I hope this recipe delights and nourishes you.