| Deviled Eggs with Caviar
12 large eggs, at least a week old
1 tablespoon salt and 1-1/4 teaspoons salt (about 1-1/2 tablespoons total)
3 medium shallots, minced
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup homemade mayonnaise or store-bought
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives
Finely grated zest of 3 lemons
3 tablespoons red caviar, well chilled
The night before the eggs are to be cooked, seal the carton with a piece of tape and turn on its side to center the yolks.
When ready to cook, place the eggs in a medium saucepan. Add water to cover by 1-1/2 inches. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Partially cover the pot and bring to a full rolling boil. Turn heat down to low and leave on the heat, covered, for 30 seconds, then remove from the heat and let eggs stand, covered, in the hot water for 15 minutes. Pour off hot water and rinse eggs under cold running water for 5 minutes. Pour off water and shake the pan to bump eggs against each other until all eggs are well cracked. Cover with cold water.
Peel the eggs under running water, rinse them, and cut in half lengthwise. Transfer the yolks to a bowl. Cover and chill yolks and whites separately for 1 hour.
Saute the shallots in butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until soft, about 2 minutes. Set aside. Mash the yolks with a fork. Mash in the sour cream. Add the mayonnaise, 1-1/4 teaspoons salt, and cayenne. Whisk until well blended. Whisk in shallots.
Fill the egg white halves with yolk mixture, extending the mixture over part of the white. Generously sprinkle each stuffed egg with chives, leaving a little yellow showing around the edges. Sprinkle each half with lemon zest. Cover and refrigerate. When ready to serve, spoon a bit of cold caviar onto each half. Serve well chilled.
Yield: 10 to 12 servings