Easy dinner recipes: Shake it up with fast deviled eggs and other ideas

Deviled eggs. This one's a no-brainer when you're looking for something simple, and you don't even need a recipe:

Halve some hard-boiled eggs and scoop out the yolks. Mash the yolks up, folding in a little sour cream or mayonnaise to lighten, a little mustard, some chopped herbs or seasoning, maybe a dash of Worcestershire. Dollop the filling back in the shell (or pipe it in if you're feeling fancy) and you've got stuffed eggs. To devil them properly, add a little heat with a dash of Tabasco or a sprinkling of cayenne pepper.

Of course, you could shake up the flavors if you're looking for something different. Here are a few suggestions:

Throw chopped shallot, sun-dried tomatoes and capers in the filling for added color and a bit of tang. A sprinkling of chopped basil over the finished eggs and you're good to go.

RECIPES: 99 easy dinner ideas in about an hour or less

Or add chopped cornichons and fresh tarragon to the mix along with chopped shallot. As Food editor Russ Parsons says, it's "a kind of inside-out sauce gribiche."

You could also fold in cumin and paprika to give the filling smoky undertones. Capers add a little crunch and tang, the finished eggs sprinkled with a little more paprika.

You can find recipes for the three suggestions below.

And for more ideas, click through our easy dinner recipes gallery and check out our Dinner Tonight page, devoted to recipes that can be made in an hour or less. Looking for a particular type of recipe? Comment below or email me at noelle.carter@latimes.com.

SUN-DRIED TOMATO STUFFED EGGS

Servings: 24 eggs

Active work time: 25 minutes

Total preparation time: 1 hour 15 minutes

12 eggs

8 sun-dried tomatoes (not in oil)

2 tablespoons capers, drained and chopped

1 large shallot, finely minced

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/2 cup mayonnaise

4 tablespoons thinly sliced basil, divided

1. Place the 12 eggs in a large saucepan. Fill with cool water. Bring the water to  boil over medium heat. As soon as it boils, reduce the heat to simmer and cook the eggs 20 minutes. Fill a bowl with ice cubes and cold water and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, place the sun-dried tomatoes in a microwave-safe bowl and cover them with water. Microwave for 2 minutes, then let the tomatoes sit several minutes until they have softened. Drain on paper towels, then finely mince.

3. When the eggs are cooked, lift them from the pan using a slotted spoon and place them in the cold water. Chill completely, then peel and slice them in half lengthwise. Remove the yolks and push them through a potato ricer or a meshed strainer to break them up into small pieces. This will help make a smoother mixture.

4. Combine the yolks, tomatoes, capers, shallot, mustard, mayonnaise and 2 tablespoons of basil in a small bowl. Stir to combine.

5. If the egg whites are inclined to roll around on a plate, cut a very thin slice off the bottom. Fill a pastry bag fitted with the star tip with the egg yolk mixture. Pipe the filling into the egg whites, then garnish the eggs with the remaining basil. If you don't have a pastry bag, you can cut the tip off a resealable bag to pipe in the filling, or use a teaspoon. Cover the eggs with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Each egg: 61 calories; 137 mg sodium; 97 mg cholesterol; 4 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 3 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams protein; 0.35 gram fiber.

DEVILED EGGS WITH TARRAGON AND CORNICHONS

25 minutes. 24 pieces

12 hard-boiled eggs

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons minced shallots, plus more for garnish

2 tablespoons finely diced cornichons, plus more for garnish

1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon, plus more for garnish

1. Carefully peel the eggs and cut them in half lengthwise. Remove the yolks to a medium work bowl, arranging the egg whites cut-side up on a plate.

2. Use a fork to mash the yolks as smooth as possible, then add the mayonnaise, mustard, salt, 2 teaspoons shallots, 2 tablespoons cornichons and 1 tablespoon tarragon, and beat together until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning.

3. Use a pastry bag or two small spoons to fill the cavity in each egg white with an equal amount of the yolk mixture. If necessary, smooth the tops with your fingers to create a dome and to spread the filling to fill the cavity.

4. Sprinkle the tops of the eggs with the remaining shallots, cornichons and tarragon and press lightly with your fingertips so they'll adhere. Transfer to a serving plate.

EACH PIECE

Calories 73

Protein 3 grams

Carbohydrates 1 grams

Fiber 0

Fat 6 grams

Saturated fat 1 gram

Cholesterol 96 mg

Sugar 0

Sodium 122 grams

DEVILED EGGS WITH CAPERS AND SMOKED PAPRIKA

20 minutes. 24 pieces

12 hard-boiled eggs

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup capers; if salted, rinsed and drained

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika (pimenton de la Vera), plus more for garnish

1. Carefully peel the eggs and cut them in half lengthwise. Remove the yolks to a medium work bowl, arranging the egg whites cut-side up on a plate.

2. Use a fork to mash the yolks as smooth as possible, then add the mayonnaise, capers, cumin and smoked paprika and beat together until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning.

3. Use a pastry bag or two small spoons to fill the cavity in each egg white with an equal amount of the yolk mixture. If necessary, smooth the tops with your fingers to create a dome and to spread the filling to fill the cavity.

4. Sprinkle the tops of the eggs with more smoked paprika. Transfer to a serving plate.

EACH PIECE

Calories 72

Protein 3 grams

Carbohydrates 1 gram

Fiber 0

Fat 6 grams

Saturated fat 1 gram

Cholesterol 96 mg

Sugar 0

Sodium 97 mg

 

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