Growing up, my mother would religiously (pun somewhat intended) boil off a dozen eggs every year on Good Friday. We’d color them, put them in our Easter baskets, and come Monday morning, toss them all in the trash. Well, not quite all–I’d usually work up the courage to try one, gag, and vow to never subject myself to another and one of my brothers would inevitably hide a couple in my closet to be discovered later in the week.
Needless to say, we were not a hard-boiled egg family. I thought everyone one like us, I thought everyone realized just how disgusting hard-boiled eggs were. I didn’t realize plenty of people were raised loving egg salad sandwiches and most siblings would fight each over a deviled egg instead of seeing them as something only to be eaten on a dare.
A year or two ago, I made a conscious decision to give hard-boiled eggs an honest try. I cracked open my “America’s Test Kitchen” cookbook and taught myself the proper way to boil an egg. I started adding them to salads. At first, I found them challenging. Then I found them satisfying. I even started to crave them and, eventually, I came around to what used to be my worst nightmare: egg salad.
Now to be honest, this isn’t exactly the same gloppy, rubbery egg salad that would have caused me to break out in a cold sweat when I was younger; this is luxurious, grown-up egg salad. For this egg salad, we grate the hard-boiled eggs so they’re fine and fluffy and toss them with a dollop of crème fraîche, fresh tarragon, scallions, Dijon mustard, and a squeeze of lemon. It’s decadent yet delicate, rich yet light, and oddly appealing even to someone who formerly detested egg salad above all other edibles.
Side note–I’m terrible at peeling eggs. Maybe if I’d practiced for the 30 years leading up to this moment, I’d have the situation under better control.
To serve, pile the egg salad onto a toasted slice of grainy, nutty bread and serve as an open-faced sandwich for lunch. You could go the appetizer route and spread it on canapés and top with a few radish slices or use it to top an almost burnt English muffin and have yourself a breakfast feast. I’ll be doing all of the above–I’ve got some catching up to do.
- 6 Eggs
- 3 Tbsp. Crème Fraîche
- 2 tsp. Dijon Mustard
- 2 Tsp. Lemon Juice
- 4 Scallions, thinly sliced
- 2 Tbsp. chopped Tarragon
- Flaky Sea Salt
- Place the eggs in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat, cover, and let sit for 10 minutes. Transfer the eggs to an ice bath and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- Peel the hard-boiled eggs and shred the eggs into a medium bowl, using the largest wholes on a grater. Add the remaining ingredients, along with about ¼ tsp. kosher salt and a few twists of black pepper. Gently toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning, as needed. Serve on toasted bread and finish with a few flakes of sea salt.
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