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It’s Derby day! What are you serving?

The Kentucky Derby is today and I have been planning some special snacks for the big event. “The Local Palate” had some great ideas for a derby party so I have tried three of them and found them to be tasty and easy to do. Kentucky is known for its ham,. so what a better pick up than ham biscuits? With the ham biscuits is a salad with butterbeans and radishes. A little different but good. For more pick up foods we have pickled shrimp on deviled eggs and pimento cheese gougères. This is a take on the French cheese puffs knows as gougères, but done with pimento cheese. It is not too late to make some of these so get ready for the fastest two minutes in sports.

 

From ‘The Local Palate’ May 2018.

Pickled Shrimp Deviled Eggs

Serves 6

 

For the shrimp:

1 ½ pounds extra-small shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 small head fennel, cored and thinly sliced

10 sprigs flat-leaf parsley

5 whole bird’s eye chilies

1 teaspoon whole allspice berries

3 bay leaves

½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

½ cup rice wine vinegar

½ cup olive oil

For the deviled eggs:

1 dozen large eggs

½ cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Salt to taste

Make the shrimp: Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over high heat. Add shrimp, cook for 60 seconds, and drain. In a large, nonreactive container, layer shrimp and aromatics. Pour liquid ingredients over top while shrimp are still warm. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours to allow shrimp to pickle.

Make the eggs: Bring a large pot of water to boil over high heat and carefully lower eggs into boiling water. Set a timer for 8 minutes, and while eggs are cooking, prepare an ice bath in a large bowl. After 8 minutes, drain and shock eggs in ice bath, then peel them. Halve eggs and place yolks in the bowl of a food processor with mayonnaise, mustard and lemon juice. Run food processor until mixture is completely smooth, about 2 minutes, and then adjust seasoning.

To assemble: Spoon filling into a zip-top bag, snip end from bag, and pipe filling into egg halves. Drain pickled shrimp and vegetables, chop pickled vegetables finely, and top each egg half with a pinch of chopped vegetables and a pickled shrimp.

 

Pimento Cheese Gougères

Makes 25

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 ½ cups flour

4 large eggs

6 ounces finely shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 (12-ouce) Jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped

1 large egg yolk, beaten

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium pot over medium heat, combine butter, salt, and 1 cup water. When butter is melted, remove pot from heat, add flour, and whisk well to combine. Return to heat and cook mixture, beating vigorously with a wooden spoon, until dough pulls together and forms a mass, about 3 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until dough is no longer tacky, about 2 minutes more. Remove pot from heat and let dough cool slightly. Add eggs one at a time, incorporating completely before adding the next. Stir in about 5 ounces of cheese and chopped peppers.

Spoon dough into a zip-top bag, snip end from bag, and pipe 1-inch rounds onto a sheet pan. Brush with beaten egg yolk and top with remaining cheese. Bake until risen and browned, about 25 minutes.

 

Butterbean and Radish Salad

Serves 6

For the dressing:

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

1/3 cup olive oil

For the salad:

12 ounces shelled butterbeans (fresh or frozen)

1 bunch radishes, very thinly sliced

½ cup chopped dill fronds

½ cup tarragon leaves

½ cup torn mint leaves

Make the dressing: Combine ingredients in a lidded jar and shake vigorously.

Make the salad: Prepare an ice bath. Blanch butterbeans in salted boiling water for 2 minutes, then shock in ice bath. Drain and cool butterbeans. In a medium bowl, toss butterbeans, radishes, and herbs with dressing.