Tasty recipes to recycle those lovely Easter eggs

Margaret Maples

Easter eggs aren’t just pretty. In fact, they may be too pretty for simple deviling or everyday salad. Don’t they inspire you to make something a little different but sure to please? 

Here are four fabulous egg recipes: Scotch Eggs, Brunch Strata, Classic Vanilla Crème Brulee and Almond Macaroons.

Try Scotch eggs – boiled eggs cooked in a coating of sausage and bread crumbs. And if you stocked up but didn’t boil and dye all that hen fruit, make a strata. It’s a savory bread pudding that’s a delicious main dish for brunch. 

Finish with a classic that calls for yolks and whites: crème brulee and raspberry sauce, with almond macaroons on the side.

Scotch Eggs

Makes 4 servings

4 hard-boiled eggs

8 ounces Italian sausage, divided into 4 parts

2 egg whites, beaten

½ cup crisp bread crumbs

¼ teaspoon seasoned salt, such as Lawry’s

Romaine leaves, dressed with your favorite vinaigrette

Tomatoes, sliced

Sweet pickles

Shell the hard-boiled eggs. Line a baking sheet with parchment; set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Flatten the sausage meat into discs about ¼-inch thick. Wrap the eggs in the sausage meat, being careful to seal each seam firmly. Roll each wrapped egg in egg whites.

Mix the bread crumbs with seasoned salt. Roll each egg in seasoned bread crumbs.

Bake the eggs for 20 to 25 minutes.

Slice the eggs and arrange them on the dressed Romaine leaves with tomatoes and pickles.

Adapted from online sites

Brunch Strata

Makes about 6 servings

1 to 2 tablespoons canola oil

½ pound turkey sausage

3 tablespoons chopped red onion

8 cups bread cubes (firm white bread, crust trimmed off)

8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar

1 cup sliced mushrooms

1 cup broccoli florets

6 large eggs

1½ cups milk

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

Sour cream

In a large skillet, heat the oil and cook the sausage. Add  chopped onion and cook until turkey is browned and crumbled, and onion is soft. Drain well on paper towels.

Butter a glass baking dish (13 ½ by 8 ¾ by 1 ¾ inches). In it, arrange half of the bread cubes. Sprinkle the cubes with half of the cheese. Continue with a layer of sausage, mushrooms and broccoli. Top with the remaining bread crumbs.

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Pour this mixture over the strata. Cover and chill for 1 hour or overnight.

To prepare for serving: Bring strata to room temperature and let stand for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Place the strata dish in a larger baking pan and add enough water to the pan to reach halfway up the sides of the strata dish. Bake for about 45 minutes, then sprinkle on the remaining cheese and continue baking until the strata sets and the cheese melts.

Pipe sour cream on top of the strata, or let guests add it as they wish.

Adapted from online recipes

Classic Vanilla Crème Brulee

with Raspberry Sauce and Almond Macaroons

Makes 4 servings

1½ cups heavy whipping cream

4 large egg yolks

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ cup superfine sugar

Raspberry Sauce

12 ounces  frozen raspberries, thawed

½ cup granulated sugar

Almond Macaroons

Makes about 36 cookies  1½ inches in diameter (seal  extras in airtight containers)

1 can (8 ounces) almond paste, chopped into small pieces

1¼ cup granulated sugar

2 large egg whites

Crème brulee: Position a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Butter 4  4-ounce ramekins. Set a kettle of water on to boil.

In a medium saucepan, heat cream until small bubbles appear around the edges. Do not boil. While the cream heats, whisk yolks and sugar in a medium bowl until the mixture is light in color.

While whisking the egg mixture rapidly, pour in the hot cream. Strain into a large glass measuring cup. Stir in vanilla extract.

Pour custard into the buttered ramekins. Arrange the ramekins inside a larger baking pan. Pour enough boiling water into the baking pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Move pan carefully – no sloshing – into the oven.

Bake until the custards move as a single mass when you shift the pan gently, about 30 to 35 minutes. The centers will seem soft.

Remove custards from the oven and let cool in the water bath. Refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours.

Up to 1 hour before serving, carefully blot any moisture from the tops of the custards with a paper towel. Sprinkle the custards evenly with superfine sugar. Use a kitchen blowtorch to caramelize the sugar lightly. Let stand for a few minutes to allow the sugar to harden.  (You can also set an oven rack 3 inches from the broiler and caramelize the sugar topping this way. Set the custards on a baking sheet and shift it as needed for 1 to 2 minutes to brown the sugar evenly.)

Raspberry sauce: Puree thawed raspberries in a food processor, then press through a strainer to remove seeds. Combine the raspberry puree and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Remove from stove and let cool.

Macaroons: Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment. Set aside.

In a food processor or mixer, combine the almond paste, sugar and egg whites. Beat until smooth. Use a pastry bag and round tip to pipe spirals and curls on the parchment. (If you don’t have a pastry bag, spoon the batter into a sandwich bag, close it firmly and cut a sliver off one corner.)

Bake at 325 degrees for about 20 minutes or until macaroons turn a light golden color. Allow macaroons to cool, then peel them off the parchment. If they cling, wet the back of the parchment to free them.

Serve custards and macaroons on dessert plates and pass around raspberry sauce in a small pitcher.

Crème brulee recipe adapted from “The Good Egg,” by Marie Simmons;

macaroons adapted from Solo almond paste recipe