Hard-Boiled Eggs, Superfood…
I feel sorry for the traditional hard-boiled Easter egg. Once a prominent feature in Easter baskets, the incredible edible ovoid now takes a proverbial back seat to plastic eggs filled with treats, jelly beans, chocolate bunnies, malt balls and Peeps.
Peeps? Come on, people! I hate to be a Debbie Downer, but did you know that the marshmallow concoction is pretty much pure sugar (plus yellow dye #5, preservatives, gelatin and wax)?
Now, compare that with the underrated hard-boiled superfood. Eggs – called “nature’s multivitamin” by some medical experts – are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. One large egg contains 77 calories, 6 grams of quality protein, 5 grams of fat and trace amounts of carbohydrates. It is also supplies your body (and your children’s bodies!) with small doses of nearly every vitamin and mineral you need, including calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, manganese, vitamin E, folate and more. Don’t freak out over the high cholesterol content – about 213 mg per egg. Studies suggest that eggs improve your cholesterol profile, increasing HDL (good cholesterol) and promoting LDL particles, which benefits heart health.
And if nutrition is not your concern, then let’s examine cultural and spiritual considerations. In many cultures, eggs are considered a symbol of rebirth. In Christianity, Easter eggs symbolize the empty tomb of Jesus, from which He resurrected. Jelly beans have zero spiritual significance, just sugar.
I’m not suggesting you fill your basket with all-organic, nutritious, tofu-laden granola bars. I love Reese’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Easter Eggs as much as the next guy. Just don’t forget the original Easter treat: The underrated hard-boiled egg.
In the United States, 180 million eggs are bought each Easter season. So, I’m not the only one who will pick up another carton or two at the grocery store. But after eating one or two eggs with a little salt and pepper, what do you with the rest? Egg-cellent question. (Did you really think I would get through this article without one lame egg pun?)
Fortunately, there are about 180 million ways to include leftover hard-boiled eggs in a recipe: deviled eggs, egg salad sandwiches, potato salad, Cobb salad, you get the idea.
Here are just a few less conventional options:
It’s pizza, but it’s not from Italy. It’s called Portuguese Pizza, but it’s not really from Portugal. Portuguese Pizza is popular in Brazil and it’s loaded with goodness. You can make homemade pizza dough and tomato-based sauce or use store-bought ingredients, depending on your culinary skills and time. For the toppings all you need is shredded mozzarella, ham, onions (thinly sliced), olives (black or Kalamata) and two or three hard-boiled eggs (sliced). Preheat your oven to 500 degrees. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
Braised Soy Sauce Eggs are easy to make and are delicious.
• 12 hard-boiled eggs (peeled)
• 4 cups water
• 2 T dark soy sauce
• 3 T soy sauce
• 1½ T sugar
• 1 stick cinnamon
• 3 tsp. star anise
• Dash of salt
Note on the ingredients:
You don’t need to boil 12 eggs. This recipe is good for 6-12. Also, dark soy sauce is used mostly to add color to the eggs. You can use 5 tablespoons of regular soy sauce if you don’t care about aesthetics.
Bring water to boil in a pot. Add the rest of the ingredients (except the eggs). Lower the heat to medium and boil for about 15-20 minutes. Add the eggs and turn down the heat to simmer. Allow the eggs to steep in the liquid for two hours. Remove the eggs and enjoy! If you make extra, leave the eggs in the liquid and store in the fridge. The longer the eggs sit in the stock, the more the flavorful they get.
This might sound weird for some of you, but I swear you will love Hard-Boiled Egg Chocolate Chip Cookies. Just follow a traditional recipe (I almost always use the Nestle’ Toll House Cookie recipe on the bag of chocolate chips). But instead of adding the raw eggs to the creamed butter and sugar, add in finely diced hard-boiled eggs. The dough will be drier and the cookies will come out of the oven a bit denser. But they’re delicious.
Do not overbake the cookies. If anything, take them out of the oven a minute or two earlier than recommended.