Dukkah Deviled Duck Eggs

The Egyptian nut and spice blend dukkah flavors these über-creamy deviled duck eggs with toasted cumin, coriander and fennel seed sharpened with lemon and cayenne.

This is a very special post because it’s dedicated to a super special lady: Emily of The Pig and Quill, in honor of her pending new addition. Congratulations, lady!!! I had the pleasure of meeting Emily for brunch last fall and was instantly hooked on her good vibes and generosity of spirit. I know she’ll make a terrific mama and I couldn’t be more excited for her little piglet. For her virtual baby shower today, bloggers all over are converging on party foods to eat with our eyes. 

Since Emily is the master of infusing comforting classics with world flavors (how badly do we all want a trough of these Greek sweet potato fries with curried tzatziki??) I added a North African twist to the classic nosh that has graced cocktail parties for decades.

Duck eggs are particularly good devilers due to their big, fat yolks. I first tried them at Alembic soon after it had opened when my friend Amelia and I would stop by for a drink (usually a Mediterranean Homesick Blues for me) after work. They were a steal at a dollar apiece and when they finally came off of the menu, I vowed to make them myself.

It only took me six years. But hey, better late than never, right?

This recipe takes inspiration from The Perfect Egg, a brand-spanking-new book by the duo at Spoon Fork Bacon, Teri and Jenny. I was lucky enough to attend a bloggerly brunch at the picturesque Williams-Sonoma headquarters with Sarah, Ana and Pang where we got to watch Teri and Jenny demonstrate a few of the dishes from the book and then proceed to gorge ourselves on Brick Toast, Mini Toad-in-a-Hole Sandwiches, and Sabayon with fresh berries. The book brims with stunning picture after stunning picture of sweet and savory dishes all featuring eggs, including several deviled egg variations, each sounding more delectable than the last. Other recipes I’ve got my eye on are the Okonomiyaki, Avgolemono, and Spicy Chocolate Mousse. (Also, all of them!)

But first up were deviled eggs.

Deviled eggs are admittedly a bit of a pain. Eggs are boiled, peeled, scooped, whipped with goodies, and then shoveled back into their whites. I realized halfway through the peeling process that I’ve never posted a deviled egg recipe on this site and was more than tempted to just throw the little buggers in a bowl and call it dukkah duck egg salad. But there’s something special about serving up those billowy yolks in their own vessels that makes all that effort well worth the adorable outcome.

Usual deviled egg suspects can include onion, pickles, mustard, and paprika in addition to mayonnaise, but I keep the flavorings to a minimum to let the dukkah take center stage, adding just a bit of lemon zest and juice and a bit of cayenne to sharpen the flavors. The tangy acidity of lemon juice and zest creates layers of flavor along with a host of toasted spices: cumin, coriander, fennel seed, pepper, and toasted pistachios.

A few do’s and don’ts of deviled eggs that I’ve picked up along the way:

-Do yourself a favor and use eggs that are at least week old; they’ll be easier to peel and won’t make you hate life.

-Don’t slice the eggs with a serrated knife unless you want wavy textured whites. They don’t look pretty.

-Don’t try to cut corners on the mayo. It has a bad rap, but it’s really just emulsified oil. I’ve tried making deviled eggs with yogurt and it just isn’t the same. Mayo haters, suck it up.

-Puree the yolks in a food processor or work them through a mesh strainer for a silky smooth filling. Mashing will never get it quite as smooth as you want, though it will work in a pinch.

-Add enough acidity to counter the richness of all that eggy goodness. A mild vinegar, lemon juice, or pickle juice are all good options.

-Don’t let your eggs sit out for too long before shoving them in the mouths of politely offering them along with a dainty cocktail napkin and glass of chilled rose to your guests. They will form an unsightly crust. (Don’t look too carefully at these close-ups either…)

Many congratulations again to Miss Emily and her little one to be! Check out the smorgasbord of offerings from other party-goers below:

With Food + Love
So…Let’s Hang Out
Cake Over Steak
Will Frolic For Food
Earthy Feast
Fix Feast Flair
The Food Gays
Lady and Pups
Two Red Bowls
Beard and Bonnet
Dula Notes
A Little Saffron
Nosh and Nourish
Loves Food, Loves to Eat
Tasty Yummies
I am a Food Blog
Dunk & Crumble

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Dukkah Deviled Duck Eggs

With inspiration from The Perfect Egg and Super Natural Everyday

If you can’t find duck eggs, never fear: use 8 hen’s eggs and reduce the cooking times to 1 minute of boiling and 9 minutes of steeping. You can boil the eggs, prepare the filling, and make the dukkah a day or two in advance, but these will be prettiest if assembled just before serving.

Makes 12 deviled egg halves

1 tablespoon pistachios, lightly toasted, cooled, and finely chopped
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon sesame seeds (white or brown)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon flaky salt (such as Maldon)Deviled Duck Eggs:
6 duck eggs (or 8 hen’s eggs)
1/4 cup good-quality mayonnaise (such as Spectrum olive oil mayonnaise)
finely grated zest from 1 small lemon (or 1/2 a larger lemon)
4 teaspoons lemon juice (more as needed to taste)
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder and/or a few dashes Tabasco (optional, if you like a bit of kick)
2 1/2 tablespoons dukkah, from above, plus more for sprinkling

Make the dukkah:
In a medium-sized, heavy skillet, combine the coriander, sesame, cumin, and fennel. Toast over a medium-low flame, shaking the pan regularly until the seeds are golden and fragrant, a few minutes. Let cool completely. Place the spices in a mortar and pestle and grind coarsely. Stir in the pepper, salt, and pistachios.Make the eggs:
Place the duck eggs in a medium saucepan and add enough hot tap water to cover by one inch. Place over medium-high heat, and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 2 minutes (set a timer), then remove from the heat, cover, and let stand 10 minutes. Drain the eggs and cover them with ice and cool water to stop the cooking. Let cool completely, then peel and rinse the eggs, and  use a sharp chef’s knife to slice each in half lengthwise.

Scoop the yolks out of the eggs and place them in a food processor, placing the whites on a platter. Add the mayonnaise, lemon zest and juice, salt, and cayenne to the food processor and puree until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Scrape the yolk mixture into a bowl and stir in 2 1/2 tablespoons of the dukkah. Use a small spoon, spring-loaded ice cream scoop, or piping bag fitted with a wide plain tip (or plastic bag with the corner snipped off) to get the filling into the hollowed egg whites. Sprinkle the tops with the remaining dukkah, and serve.

52 thoughts on “Dukkah Deviled Duck Eggs”

  1. Yes please! This sounds like such a great way to change up the classic deviled egg. Re mayonnaise: we tend to make 1 egg's worth of homemade whenever we want egg salad or deviled eggs — I bet it would be excellent here!

    1. Oh man, that would be amazing!! I'm scared to make mayonnaise since I've had a few fails that resulted in so much wasted oil…. teach me how??

  2. um. you put my deviled eggs to shame! i'm going to have to stuff my face full of these duck eggs in order to make myself feel better…

    seriously though – i always admire your photos alanna, such gorgeous tones!

  3. Oh my gosh I have ALL the googly eyes for this. Yesss for duck eggs, and putting dukkah in them? So, so creative, Alanna!! You never cease to inspire.

  4. Alanna — what the dukkah! How have I never thought of 1) adding dukkah to deviled eggs or 2) deviling DUCK EGGS? I shouldn't be at all surprised since your culinary genius is kind of off the heezy. And these pictures! I mean, I looked too closely (against your recommendation) and STILL couldn't find a flaw. So, so pretty. Thank you SO much for helping celebrate our little one! Very much looking forward to our next brunch at Plow and being able to eat ALL THE BACON. xoxo! <3 <3

    1. Why didn't I think of "what the dukkah??" haha! You'll have to fight me for the bacon – let's gooooo!!! Thanks for the super sweet words, lady. I can't wait to meet your little one! <3 <3 <3

  5. I lovvveee duck eggs, their yolks have to be one of the richest, creamiest things on earth. And dukkah just adds so much to everything. I have a zatar deviled egg recipe on my blog (very old) but I love adding blends like that to something so ordinary. And bravo on the tip about adding acidity. I always feel when I eat a deviled egg at a potluck they are so average because people forget that part. Happy spring! xo

  6. I could spend all day on your blog just clicking through post after post of amazingly beautiful deliciousness. These deviled duck eggs (with dukkah!!) are my everything right now. I'm sure Em died over these!! P.s. Man do I miss Alembic!!

    1. Awwwww!!!! Thanks lady, I feel exactly the same about your lovely site! I haven't been to Alembic in too long. It got insanely crowded and scene-y, but they're just about to open their new expansion so I'll have to try it again. My new fave it %Abv – if you find yourself in Nocal we should go!

  7. The only thing I hate about deviled eggs is how quickly they disappear. These are spectacular and I don't think I'd share them with a soul–last longer that way! :)

  8. I was just thinking what to do with those breautiful duck eggs I have here after an eggs-centric shopping spree. Will make a fabulous starter to the last of our Easter celebrations, I bet. Love your blog, Alanna and have been browsing all Easter, so many things to cook in the coming weeks with a wonderful dose of yearning for the Bay Area! I nearly smell the Redwoods and the Pacific and then some 101 & 280. Nicole

  9. I LOVE this post – I'm super excited to now know what goes into the addicting dukkah that you put on those crackers months ago (I've been dreaming about them). I love that you used all of your dainty spoons! And these photos? The contrast between the bright yellow egg and the dark blue backdrop is insane. So so pretty! Also – these were delicious – I second the "don't skip the mayo" rule;P (I like mayo…if it's in my deviled eggs;)

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