Showstopper Recipe: Beet–Pickled Deviled Eggs

Is there a more beloved party food than a platter of freshly deviled eggs? The humble and classy appetizer gets sassed up when plunged into a jar of beets, vinegar, brown sugar and pink pepper corns. This unique twist will turn heads and delight tummies! More photos below:

As a kid, I feared the hard boiled egg — the rubbery, lifeless white and mealy, too–rich yolk turned me off and I eschewed the ubiquitous plate of party deviled eggs in search of finer snack foods, namely cheese doodles if super lucky, but I'd settle for crackers of any sort. Then I'd sit on the couch and eat my way through a small stack, systematically whittling down my cracker by nibbling its circumference, enjoying the salty crumbles over a 15 minute period, washing down my forbidden processed glory with a glass of lemonade.

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About twenty five years later, I dared try a deviled egg — what a delight I'd been missing! Gone was the chalky, fatty taste and hello to a piquant blend of mustard, onions and pickle. It was party time with me and the eggs and it was on!

These beet–soaked darlings are the only improvement or variation I'd recommend over a classic, paprika-dusted standard. Normally, deviled eggs aren't going to win any beauty contests, but with the beet brine bath, they take on a striking pink cloak as well as an earthy sour tang. The addition of peppercorns and brown sugar imbues another level of pickled spice. The filling punctuates the tang with the subtle curry spice and freshness of aromatic rosemary.

These eggs are not for the faint of heart, they are so lively and packed with flavor! Perfect on their own or smashed onto a piece of hearty toast, they make an excellent breakfast or anytime snack. That's to say you have leftovers, which you won't. So make an extra batch for yourself.

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Beet-Pickle Deviled Eggs (makes 12 halves)

6 eggs
1 can pickled beets
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon peppercorns (I used fiery pink peppercorns)
1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh rosemary for garnish

Hard boil your eggs and remove the shells. For perfect hard boiled eggs, I use this method. Set the eggs aside.

To prepare your brine, pour a can of pickled beets into a large mason jar or bowl. Add cider vinegar, sugar, peppercorns and salt. Stir mixture. Carefully (that beet juice will stain!) lower the hard boiled eggs into the brine, cover and let sit for at least 12 hours, up to 2 or three days. The longer you leave them in the brine, the more sour and pink they'll end up. I like just the rim of pink and slight pickled flavor, so I let mine sit about 16 hours.

When brining time is finished, cut each egg in half and scoop out yolks. Place yolks in a medium-sized bowl, along with the mustard, mayonnaise, curry, vinegar, and olive oil. Mix/mash until smooth. You can always add a little bit of water to the mixture, if it's too stiff. Salt and pepper to taste.

Using a pastry bag or a plastic bag with the corner cut off, pipe the yolk mixture back into the pink eggs. Sprinkle with chopped rosemary and season with salt and pepper.

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Related: Recipe: Smoky Deviled Eggs with Greek Yogurt

(Images: Leela Cyd Ross l styling by Kirsten Neiman)

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