The week before Easter brings to mind happy childhood memories of brightly dyed eggs. The week after Easter, however, reminds me of opening my lunchbox to find egg salad sandwiches in strange shades of blue or pink. As a kid, I viewed hard-boiled eggs as a fun tradition before Easter and an unfortunate problem afterward.
Well, times have changed. In the All About Eggs post, I mentioned how much my family likes eggs, a cheap and versatile protein. I like keeping hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator to use as a portable snack or topping for salads.
Originally, I’d planned to title this post “How to Make Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs.” You know, ones with rich yellow yolks and firm whites that are a breeze to peel. I used to be able to do it, but the past three attempts to make hard boiled eggs have resulted in undercooked yolks and shells that are incredibly hard to peel. My hard-boiled eggs would make Martha Stewart weep.
I plan to tweak my method a bit next time (see recipe below), but I am open to advice. Seriously, what am I doing wrong?!
Today’s recipe comes from Heidi Swanson’s book, Super Natural Everyday: Well Loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen (Amazon). She is one of my favorite cookbook authors and food bloggers (read more below).
This salad, a Broccoli Gribiche, combines roasted potatoes and broccoli with hard boiled eggs, swirled in a flavorful vinaigrette dressing. You toss everything together while slightly warm and serve at room temperature. It is easily my favorite way to use hard-boiled eggs; the leftovers are great for lunch the next day.
While it may look like there are many steps in this recipe, it actually comes together really quickly and easily (around 25 minutes). Cook the eggs and make the dressing while the broccoli and potatoes are roasting. You want a slight char on the broccoli and deep caramelization on the potatoes. Don’t think you like broccoli? You’ve got to try roasting it. Even my 2-year old son gobbles it down.
The main changes I made to Heidi Swanson’s recipe was in the herbs and seasonings. For simplicity’s sake, I omit the original recipe’s capers, shallots, and tarragon and just use parsley and chives. Feel free to mix and match with any combination you have on hand.
Recipe adapted from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Everyday (Amazon)
1 1/2 pounds fingerling potatoes (any waxy type works great; avoid baking potatoes), unpeeled and scrubbed
1/2 c. 2 T. olive oil
Kosher or sea salt
12 ounces broccoli cut into florets
4 large eggs, hard-boiled and peeled
2 T. red wine vinegar
1-2 t. Dijon mustard
1 T. chopped fresh parsley
1 T. chopped chives or green onion
- Place eggs in a single layer in a medium saucepan and cover with about 1 inch of cold water.
- Bring to a boil and simmer gently for one minute. Turn off the heat, cover the pan, and let the eggs sit in the hot water for 10 minutes.
- Drain the hot water, and place the eggs into a bowl filled with ice water until cool. Peel.
Broccoli and Potatoes
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the potatoes into 1-1 1/2″ chunks. Using your hands, toss the potatoes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and turn them onto a sheet pan; sprinkle with salt. Put the potatoes in the oven and roast them until they are cooked through and browned (about 20 minutes); do not stir or move the potatoes during this time for best results.
- About 10 minutes before you think the potatoes are done, add 1 tablespoon of oil to the broccoli and toss to coat. Arrange the broccoli in a single layer on a sheet pan; sprinkle with salt. Put the broccoli into the oven and roast untouched; the potatoes and broccoli should be done about the same time and both should show signs of browning and slight char (on the broccoli).
- Remove the yolk of one of the hard-boiled eggs and mash in a medium sized bowl. Slowly add 1/2 cup of olive oil beating constantly with a wire whisk.
- Whisk in the vinegar, followed by the mustard, whisking each ingredient into the dressing. Stir in the herbs and salt, to taste. Chop the peeled hard-boiled eggs and add them to the dressing.
Place the warm potatoes and broccoli into a large bowl and gently fold in the dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Serve at room temperature.
I can’t say enough good things about Heidi Swanson’s cookbook, Super Natural Everyday: Well-Loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen (or her blog, 101 Cookbooks). Her books have changed the way I think about, shop for, and prepare food more than any other cookbooks I own (find more of my favorite cookbooks here).
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