I almost forgot that the fabulous Peabody at Culinary Concoctions By Peabody is having a cyber Housewarming Party to celebrate the beautiful new abode she recently bought. If you haven't been to Peabody's blog, do yourself a favor and check it out. She makes drool-worthy confections that haunt my dreams. Most people microwave a bag of popcorn for a snack. Not Peabody. She makes cupcakes and brownies so decadent, my heart skips a beat when I look at the photos on her blog. The deadline for the housewarming party is approaching and I was stumped on what to bring. Then I thought of the most reliable dish to bring to any party: Deviled eggs. Oh sure, many people think they're pedestrian, but notice how quickly they disappear when you set a platter of them down on a table? They're perfect party food, because you can hold them in your hand and nibble on them delicately with your pinky finger crooked--or toss back as many as you like, whole, in your mouth. No danger of them dribbling crumbs or liquid on the floor, they're easily carried to nosh on, as you look at Peabody's lovely new home.
I like deviled eggs, and pesto makes these particularly delicious. And since I had frozen cubes of pesto on hand, it was a snap to make them. You can buy pesto in the stores, or make your own. You can use other types of pesto, such as cilantro or sun-dried tomato, if you prefer.
Pesto Deviled Eggs
about 1/2 cup pesto
pine nuts for garnish
basil leaves for garnish
6 Tbsp. mayonnaise
Put the eggs in a large pot filled with enough cold water to cover them. Place over high heat and bring water to a boil, turn down to low and let cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and put eggs in ice water for about 12 minutes. Tap the eggs all over to crack the shells, after they have cooled down a little, then return to the cold water.
About 3 cups loosely packed stemmed fresh basil leaves,
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup freshly, finely grated parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
Brown the pine nuts in a hot dry skillet for about 2-3 minutes. Set aside and until cool.
Put the basil, toasted pine nuts, parmesan cheese, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor and pulse until a rough paste is formed. With motor slowly running, slowly pour the olive oil through the feed tube until all of the ingredients are well combined, scrapping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Taste to see if you need more salt and pepper. Set aside.
Making the deviled eggs
Peel the eggs and cut in half, length-wise. Carefully remove the yolks from eggs and put them in a medium bowl. Mix yolks, 2 heaping Tablespoons of the pesto and mayo until well combined. Add more pesto, after tasting, if you like. Add more salt and pepper, if necessary. If it seems too dry, add more mayo. Spoon or pipe the mixture into the hollowed out egg whites. Garnish the top of each egg with a few pine nuts, a dollop of the pesto, and small basil leaves. Cover with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.