Effortlessly Upgrade Deviled Eggs With This Italian Staple

pesto deviled eggs
pesto deviled eggs - Irina Rostokina/Shutterstock

Pesto -- the herbaceous blend traditionally made of pine nuts, basil, extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, and Parmesan -- is the picture of versatility. Traditionally blended by crushing ingredients using a mortar and pestle, the Italian sauce is chock full of fresh, earthy flavor, and has not only inspired many flavorful variations, but is also used in an array of cultural dishes as a dipping sauce, pasta sauce, and even a sandwich spread. But what if we told you that you could use pesto to give your next batch of deviled eggs a total upgrade? That's right, adding the herby, nutty flavor of pesto to your deviled egg filling will enhance the overall flavor profile of the dish, offering an earthy variation on the classic picnic and baby shower staple. Pesto's garlicky, herby flavor profile will pair beautifully with the savory richness of the yolks and add thickness to the texture of the deviled egg filling, delivering a delicious appetizer that will make your picnic menu far from average.

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Adding Pesto To Your Deviled Egg Filling

woman making pesto
woman making pesto - Pixel-Shot/Shutterstock

There is nothing wrong with adding store-bought pesto to your deviled egg recipe. But if you choose to make your own, be sure to blend it well using either a blender or mortar and pestle. You want your pesto's consistency to be like a thick paste, which will deliver a fuller flavor and velvety mouthfeel throughout the yolk mixture, as opposed to chunks, which can be off-putting when unexpected. When you're ready to add that basil-y pesto into your filling, you'll simply add 1/3 cup of your sauce to half of your mashed egg yolks for a medium amount of filling. If you prefer a fuller egg, you can use all the yolks, but note that your pesto taste will be less pronounced. To blend your ingredients, you can go old school with a spoon or — for a smoother texture — use a food processor or blender — this will help you achieve a smooth texture amenable to a piping bag application, which will upgrade your eggs' presentation. Alternatively, for an easier filling method that still offers a sophisticated presentation, use a small cookie scoop.

Want to make a delicious pesto for your deviled eggs without pine nuts? Pistachios, walnuts, and even cooked edamame  (for a nut-free version) are all suitable replacements with a delicious nutty flavor. But if you go the edamame route and use frozen, be sure to drain them once thawed so you don't add too much liquid to your pesto.

Delectable Pairings For Those Pesto Deviled Eggs

person deveining a serrano pepper
person deveining a serrano pepper - Jo Bolio/Shutterstock

Pesto-deviled eggs can serve as a delicious base for a variety of complementary toppings. To add a smoky essence to the dish, consider topping your eggs with some bacon bits or prosciutto — the cured meats will also offer a saltiness that will enhance the richness of your yolk and add a satisfying flavor punch to the earthy pesto. Alternatively, if you'd like to keep your deviled eggs meat-free, adding some Parmesan crisps will provide a tangy kick that will bring out the cheesy notes in the pesto, not to mention add a little crunch for a fun departure in texture.

If spice is more your speed, feel free to sprinkle some chili flakes atop your eggs. And if you want to elevate those spicy pesto deviled eggs to the next level, don't wait until they are finished to add those flakes. Instead, blend a pinch or two of the flakes — or even a serrano pepper — in with your pesto before topping your eggs for a thoroughly spicy — and delicious — pesto eggs-perience.

Read the original article on Daily Meal