It seems whenever I mention pickled eggs, people’s thoughts seem to drift to that jar of white vinegar housing hard-cooked eggs found in many neighborhood bars. They always appear to have been there for way too long and their paleness does little to enhance eye appeal. I, on the other hand, think of the rosy variety I remember from my childhood. Appearing on many salad bars and always at church suppers these beauties are truly a staple of Central and Western Pennsylvania. I presume they are basically the same as the bar variety but way more appealing to the eye. These rosy gems get their bright color from the juice of pickled beets added to the brine mixture. They are simple to make, delicious to eat on their own and make a beautiful addition to salads, appetizers or vegetables.
The recipe I use is from the very first cookbook I ever owned and still holds a place among the hundreds that now make up my collection. Given to me by my mother when I first left home, it remains a classic and revised editions are still available for sale today. Admittedly, most recipes I began cooking from this book have long since been replaced or seriously modified to reflect my increasing knowledge of food and years of cooking experience. There is one, however, that I have never modified and continue to use to this day. That is the focus of todays post. Seriously, I have been making these eggs for 40 years using the same recipe from good old Better Homes and Garden.
Here it is!
Rosy Pickled Eggs Makes 12
1 c juice from canned pickled beets, homemade or commercial
1 c vinegar (I use red wine but you can use white, apple cider or whatever pleases you)
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 medium bay leaf
2 t pickling spices
½ t salt
12 hard-cooked eggs, peeled ( I use a 10 minute egg but whatever you like**See note)
In a large bowl or jar, combine beet juice, vinegar, 4 c water, garlic, bay leaf, pickling spices, and salt; mix well. Add eggs and onion rings; cover and refrigerate for several days or until juice has saturated the whites of the eggs. The brine will be absorbed into the white. The longer they sit, the more absorption.
This is how much the egg absorbed after 3 days. The picture at the top of the page was taken after six days.
**Note: My method for hard-cooked eggs keeps them moist and you won’t have that nasty green ring that can form around the yolk. Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Water should be about one-inch above the eggs. Bring water to a boil, remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Meanwhile prepare an ice water bath. Drain hot water from eggs and place immediately in the ice water. Allow to cool and then peel starting at the broad side of the egg. Really fresh eggs are harder to peel than those that are a week or so old.
I almost always make these for Easter but also make them throughout the year whenever the spirit moves me or if I happen to have a lot of eggs. As I mentioned, they make a beautiful deviled egg and I love them with steamed or roasted asparagus as a garnish. Put a few in your salad or make egg salad for your next luncheon. Wherever hard-cooked eggs will work, you can substitute these pickled ones. I should mention another benefit of this process is that you have delicious pickled onions to use as well. They too will enhance your salad or add another dimension to your favorite sandwich or vegetable side dish.
I urge you to try this recipe and let us know what you think. Will they become a staple at your house?