Every so often, Mark and I get together with two other couples for a little evening of food, drink and games. Usually each gathering has a little theme of some sort. The time Mark and I hosted it was Japandemonium and I made up a whole bunch of Japanesesque foods (edemame dip with wonton crisps, tuna tartare, rice balls stuffed with miso glazed salmon). This past Saturday, Colleen and her boyfriend Noam were the hosts and the theme was the Olympics. Each person had to represent a different country. Since Mark used to live in England he got all decked out in Ben Sherman and represented the UK. I decided to represent Russia and in lieu of dressing up, I brought vodka and as an appetizer I thought I would bring some deviled eggs stuffed with caviar, a recipe I got from little Sarah Moulton. Since West Hollywood has a large Russian population I headed down to some of the Russian delis nearby for my supplies. I found a cool looking carton of pomegranite nectar, which I picked up to go with the vodka and in another store I got a little lesson in fish eggs.
Don't these eggs look so cheerful? According to the lady who worked at the store, the more expensive the caviar, the less salty. I decided to splurge, although to be honest, the jar I bought was only $7.
6 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and halved lengthwise
1/4 cup creme fraiche or sour cream
3 tablespoons snipped fresh chives
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (Normally whenever a recipe calls for lemon juice, I grate in some of the zest as well. However, in this instance, I would recomend against it. I did and the citrus was a little over powering)
Small pinch salt
4 ounces salmon caviar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
1 bunch of watercress, for garnish
Remove the yolks from the eggs and place them in a bowl. Mash the yolks with a fork. Add the creme fraiche, chives and lemon juice to the yolks and season very lightly with salt. Mix until the ingredients are well blended.
Spoon the yolk mixture into a small zip top bag. Twist the bag closed and squeeze the mixture to one of the lower corners. Trust me, this will totally make your life easier.
Now, snip off the coner of the bag and squeeze the yolk mixture into each egg white. Top with a teaspoon of caviar. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Arrange on a bed of the watercress, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve.
These are a nice twist on the standard deviled egg - kind of a more dressed up version. Everyone at the party seemed to like them quite a lot, even those who were unsure about eating fish eggs.
One observation I had was the flavors might have been better ballanced if I had gotten some of the saltier caviar. I think it would have worked better with the lemon and the creme fraiche. Oh well. A lot of cooking is trial and error, as we all know. Not that these were bad. There was just a little room for improvement.