I have certain simple finger foods I adore. Simple in that they require little to no cooking. Let me tell you about three of them. The first is canned sardines on Triscuits (Garden Herb being my number one choice) with yellow mustard. Not a fan of sardines? Too bad, because these are fast food heaven. And, as far as I’m concerned, the only way to eat canned sardines. This is also a very special finger food. Special because my late maternal grandfather, Papa, introduced me to sardines (on saltines) and special because the only other person that I know of who loves this trio as much as I do is my 10-year-old daughter Blair. Second, avocado slices wrapped in smoked deli turkey. Two words: healthy goodness. The perfect pick-me-up meal. Oh, and my oldest daughter digs those. And finally, egg salad toasts. The underappreciated egg salad perched on an ever-so-small pedestal of garlicky French bread crowned with shredded romaine lettuce and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum! So basic. So enjoyable. These are all minimal meals created for casual consumption from fridge and pantry finds. There was no planning or forethought or recipe involved. Just hunger and a few handy ingredients. I haven’t bothered talking or writing about any of them until now because, well, there’s not much to tell. But since they’ve become a regular part of my family’s picking food and lazy lunch rotation, I thought maybe there was some value in sharing them. And with Easter around the corner, the timing couldn’t be more appropriate for the toasts. What better way to repurpose all those dyed Easter eggs, right?
If you’re familiar with Finger Food Fridays, you know that the last paragraph of most posts is devoted to my unsolicited advice on alcoholic accompaniments. And by now you’re probably thinking, maybe evening hoping, that I won’t attempt to pair anything–especially beer–with egg salad toasts? Well, guess what? I do have something in mind. That’s because there are certain beers that go really, really well with eggs. American Pale Wheat Ales top the list. Lagunitas’ A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ would be my number one choice. But there are plenty of others to choose from including, Sam Adams Summer Ale and Blue Moon Spring Blonde Wheat Ale. Give one a try. I bet you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Until next week …
Egg Salad Toasts Recipe
6 large eggs
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 loaf French bread, cut into 12 slices
1/2 cup shredded romaine lettuce, for garnish
Place eggs in a medium saucepan. Cover with 2 inches of cold water; add 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately remove pan from heat, cover and let sit for 12 minutes. Drain and run under cold water for 2 minutes. Peel and coarsely chop eggs; transfer to a medium size mixing bowl. Stir in celery, green onions, mayonnaise, lemon juice, mustard and cayenne pepper. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare toasts. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place olive oil and garlic is a small, microwavable dish. Cover and cook on high for 45 seconds. Arrange bread slices on a large baking sheet. Brush garlic oil evenly on tops of bread. Bake until lightly toasted, 7-10 minutes. Spoon egg salad evenly on toasted French bread slices. Garnish each egg salad toast with shredded lettuce and a drizzle of olive oil. Makes 4-6 appetizer servings.