Many years ago I read The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen, by Jacques Pepin. I had thought I didn't like him personally, but the book really drew me in. I loved it.
I don't know where my copy of the book is now. Poo.
But I remember one dish he described, cooked by his mother I think. It was stuffed eggs, fried stuff-side down.
M. Pepin said he couldn't recall anyone, anywhere, doing this treatment. It was singular to his family, he believed; a humble, rustic meal.
It's really rather logical, actually, and I wouldn't be surprised if other home cooks also use this technique to elevate a simple egg dish.
But I didn't have the book, so I didn't have the recipe.
For Cranky's birthday month, he suddenly blurted that he'd like to have the fried stuffed eggs.
I stepped up to the stove.
No, Cranky stepped up first. He is a master at hard-cooked eggs.
Then I took over and made a melange of the yolks. Just on instinct, I chopped a scallion, a few olives, and some parsley leaves. A crack of pepper. A squirt of olive oil. Nope, still not unctuous enough. I added a spoonful of mayonnaise.
Stuffed this mess back into the egg whites.
In an oiled, non-stick skillet, I gently fried the eggs, stuffing side down, until they browned slightly. Doesn't take long. If your eggs are cold, or even just cool room temp, you can warm them through by putting a lid on the skillet briefly.
Wow. Charming, with a crunchy, wintry salad of lettuce and orange segments.