Here’s how to serve oeufs-mayo (oeufs dur mayonnaise, or hard-cooked eggs with mayonnaise), one of my all-time-favorite classic French Bistro dishes. Scroll and learn–these babies can round out a meal in minutes.
I’ll never forget the first time I had oeufs-mayonnaise in France. We were in a touristy little town (Eze Village up above the Côte d’Azur). We figured the food would be middling, but when Dave ordered a first course of oeufs-mayo—eggs with mayonnaise—I thought, really, how ordinary can it get?
But what came to the table was a revelation. Indeed, the dish simply comprised hard-cooked eggs with a little Dijon mustard-flavored mayonnaise, which I’m pretty sure came straight from a tube. But the accompaniments—a little lettuce, a few cornichons, and some olives—made it all into this really lovely knife-and-fork appetizer.
Since then, and especially during the summer, I keep hard-boiled eggs on hand in the refrigerator; that way, whenever I make one of my fresh-and-simple French salad, whether veggies, grains, or legumes, I have something to pop onto the plate so that I can call it a meal.
My version of oeufs-mayo goes a bit beyond squeezing mayo from a tube onto some eggs–I like to doctor these cuties up with a few other ingredients: fresh herbs, lemon juice, Dijon mustard—the recipe is here.
So, here goes. A few of my favorite ways to serve oeufs-mayo:
1. As part of a sit-down appetizer spread.
Roast some asparagus, set out some olives and prosciutto. Add some breadsticks. Then pass the platter for a great sit-down appetizer course. If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere where you can pick up some good pâté, substitute that for the prosciutto.
2. To Round Out a Light Lunch or Dinner of Fresh French Summer Salads
The other day, I made my French Green Lentil Salad (it’s in the book!), and a little mushroom-celery salad. Served simply with a good cracker spread with tapenade (which I always keep on hand) and oeufs-mayo, it was a great summer lunch. (PS: Here are some other ways to serve tapenade.)
Okay–this is cheating, because I didn’t make any of these salads. I got them at the traiteur in Collioure. Tabbouleh, carrots râpé, and celeris remoulade, plus some charcuterie. If you happen to live near a French deli, this could be dinner tonight. If not, you’ll have to make these goodies yourself. (Yes, the recipes are in my book!)
Another variation on the theme, this time with my Butterhead Lettuce Salad with Walnuts and Comté (one of my favorites!), my Chick Pea Salad Provençal, a little prosciutto, and that cracker-tapenade song-and-dance.
3. With Ratatouille
Ratatouille can be a bit of a mystery: Is it a side? A starter? A garnish? I serve it a lot of different ways, but here, it stars in an ensemble with my French Tabbouleh, a few ouefs-mayo, and some crackers with a little semi-ripened goat cheese. (And if you don’t know the difference between semi-ripened and regular goat cheese, maybe you should check out my Goat Cheese Primer!).
Okay, mes amis! It’s your turn. Tell me how you like to serve Oeufs-Mayo! Post here, or join the discussion on my Facebook page.
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