Tuna or salmon stuffed eggs rescue lunch box
Eggs are low-carb, high-protein and gluten-free
If it’s already time to start gearing up for school — and if you’re open to rethinking the typical lunch box fare, consider losing the sandwich and embracing the stuffed egg.
There’s nothing more elemental and satisfying than good bread, but the standard loaf is loaded with empty calories. Eggs, by contrast, are low-carb, high-protein and gluten-free. And just about anything you can slide between two slices of bread can also be stuffed into a hard-cooked egg.
Still, I’m not talking about the typical version, loaded with mayo and a sprinkling of paprika. I mean eggs filled with any number of more substantial, and tastier, ingredients — from tuna or avocado to chicken or roast beef.
First, how to boil an egg. As a student of Julia Child, I spent decades “boiling” eggs the way she taught us, which was, in fact, not to boil them. She started by putting the eggs in a pot of cold water, then brought the water up to a boil. Next she turned off the heat, covered the pan and let the eggs sit until they were hard-cooked. Finally, to stop them from cooking, she pulled the eggs out of the pot and chilled them briefly in a bowl of ice water. This method results in egg whites that are more tender than if they had been conventionally boiled.
Then a few years ago, I heard from a couple from Chicago who suggested steaming the eggs. This method turns out to be easier to time than the no-boil method because you don’t have to wait for the water to heat up. But much more important is the end result: the whites are ridiculously tender.
MAKES 6 HARD-BOILED EGGS 6 large eggs
Start to finish: 40 minutes (5 minutes active)
Fit a collapsible steamer inside a medium saucepan and fill the saucepan with about 1 inch of water or to just below the level of the steamer basket. No water should be touching the eggs. Put the lid on top of the pan and bring the water to a medium-high boil over medium-high heat.
Using a large, long-handled, slotted spoon, place the eggs in a single layer in the steamer, being careful not to burn your hand with the steam. Steam the eggs for 12 minutes. Transfer the eggs to a bowl of ice and water and let them cool completely. This will take 20 to 30 minutes.
When they are cool, crack them all over and peel under cold running water, starting at the wide end of the egg and making sure to get under the membrane (which makes it easier to peel the egg).
Tuna or Salmon Stuffed Eggs
SERVINGS: 12 STUFFED EGG HALVES One 3.5 ounce can tuna or regular salmon, or smoked salmon, drained 6 large hard-boiled eggs ¼ cup mayonnaise 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 2 tablespoons minced celery, plus celery leaves for garnish
In a medium bowl mash the tuna with a fork until it is in small flakes. Cut the eggs in half and remove the yolks. Add the yolks to the tuna and mash the mixture well. Stir in the mayonnaise, lemon juice and celery; salt and pepper to taste. Mound a heaping spoonful of the yolk mixture into the cavity of the whites and garnish with the celery leaves.
Nutrition information per serving: 86 calories; 56 calories from fat; 6 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 99 mg cholesterol; 68 mg sodium; 0 g carbohydrate; 0 g fibre; 0 g sugar; 7 g protein.
SERVINGS: 12 STUFFED EGG HALVES 1 medium ripe Hass avocado (about ¾ cup) 6 large hard-boiled eggs 3 tablespoons minced scallions 2 to 3 teaspoons minced serrano chili (with the seeds and ribs) or to taste 1 tablespoon mayonnaise 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lime juice, or to taste Coarsely chopped cherry tomatoes, sprinkled with kosher salt for garnish
In a medium bowl mash the avocado with a fork until it is mostly smooth with a few lumps. Cut the eggs in half and remove the yolks. Add the yolks to the avocado and mash the mixture until it is smooth. Stir in the scallions, chili, mayonnaise, lime juice and salt and pepper to taste. Mound a heaping spoonful of the yolk mixture into the cavity of the whites and garnish with the chopped tomatoes.
Nutrition information per serving: 62 calories; 43 calories from fat; 5 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 94 mg cholesterol; 64 mg sodium; 1 g carbohydrate; 1 g fibre; 0 g sugar; 3 g protein.
Stuffed eggs with tuna, topped with dill, and guacamole, topped with tomatoes.