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Smoked Egg Salad Crostini

2011 June 26
Eggs are one of my greatest food weaknesses. I crave bland foods (like grains, rice and pasta), and eggs are to me what dark chocolate is to chocoholics. When I first learned about smoked eggs last year, it drove me nearly mad until I could try them for myself. I don’t know if it’s normal or healthy for a dish to gnaw at your brain for days on end, but that’s what happened.

And it didn’t disappoint. Smoke from a light smattering of wood chips infuses the eggs with a subtle savoriness that changes the flavor profile of the salad to the point where few ingredients are required to pull off something special.

These appetizers will be center stage at an upcoming 4th of July party. It’s my Mom’s 85th birthday, and all things served that day must be extra special.

One of the joys of shopping at farmers’ markets is opening the carton of fresh eggs to see what’s inside. It’s always a surprise, and I never tire of seeing the different colors, sizes and speckles.

Our crazy spring weather (continuing now into summer) is wreaking a bit of havoc with the leafy greens in my garden, as I try to stretch out their season. The plants are quick to bolt, so I must pick them small, as microgreens. Which is not a bad thing at all.

Lightly toasted bread lends structure and just the right amount of crunch to this salad. I’d suggest slicing your bread just a skosh thinner than what is shown here. I used a multigrain, very flavorful homemade bread, which almost overpowered the egg salad at this thickness.

Smoked Egg Salad Crostini

(inspired by Steven Raichlen)

It occurs to me right now as I type that it would be interesting to skip the mayo altogether and use equal quantities of greek yogurt and smashed avocado. I think the flavor would be spot-on perfect, but I’m curious as to what would happen to the color — would it be green? brown? Maybe mix the avocado with the yogurt first to lighten, then mix into the egg? Worth experimenting with, methinks.

4 eggs
1 small shallot, finely chopped
3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/4 of a lemon, or 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
12 thin slices crusty bread
tender arugula leaves, torn into small pieces, for garnish

Special equipment:
small handful of wood chips, presoaked in water for 1/2 hour (applewood, hickory or mesquite – or a combo – are all lovely)

Prepare grill for indirect grilling (hot coals gathered to one side, leaving other half of grill empty. For gas grill, preheat one burner on medium).

Place eggs in a small sauce pan and cover with water. Heat on high to boiling, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 12 minutes. Drain, and rinse eggs in cold water (or let rest in a cold water bath) until cool enough to handle, then peel.

Sprinkle some wood chips over fire (or in a smoker box). When they begin to smoke, place eggs on side of the grill with no fire, and close lid (vents open). Eggs are finished smoking when they are covered in an ochre film, about 20 minutes. Remove to a plate and allow to cool.

Chop eggs coarsely and place in a medium mixing bowl. Use a fork to smash the eggs into smaller bits. Add shallots, yogurt and mayo and mix well. Add a quick squeeze of lemon, salt and pepper. Stir well.

Place bread slices on a baking sheet and broil lightly toasted (or toast them on the grill). Repeat on the other sides. Allow to cool.

Spread egg salad on crostini, and garnish with arugula.

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2 Responses
  1. January 23, 2013

    I love eggs too, and have similar taste in food lol. These looks so good!

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