By: Terry Harris | Email: Click Here
Posted: March 30, 2019 | 8:05 a.m.
This week, since I recently learned that a lot of readers don’t realize that Queenie Cooks is available online, I’m running a repeat of one of my favorite recipes ever. But more on that in a minute.
First, let me just say that I found this recipe when we had just had SEVEN babies born in the family within a year, and all were expected for the first big Easter Egg Hunt down at the farm. It’s a big extended family picnic that’s been going on pretty much ever since I was a baby, and my sister, who is “Mimi” to several of them, had suggested that we bring finger foods, as some of the babies were not yet into utensils.
Well, I love Easter almost as much as Christmas, and I adore the “babies” (which is also what I call their parents) so I immediately began looking for a festive, fun, filling finger food recipe. (Try saying that five times – fast!) I wanted to make something special, but most of my finger food recipes are geared more to adult tastes. So I started what I expected to be a long, drawn-out search – and almost immediately stumbled upon one for baby potatoes basically filled with potato/egg salad – and bacon! I mean, who doesn’t love bacon???
First Chive flowers of spring are perfect – and beautiful – on top, with the crispy-crumbled bacon
At first I was all excited about them. Then I started thinking about how many it would take to feed the 50-something family members who would be on hand for the festivities. But I’d already committed to making Baby Potato Bites with Bacon, so I went searching for perfect baby potatoes – and trying not to think about how long it would take to clean up and prepare 150 of them. Well, imagine my delight when I discovered packages of microwave-ready baby potatoes all washed and ready to go! They were even available in a mixture of red and yellow ones – so I could have trays of what I was convinced would look like Easter eggs! And they do! They’re just as cute as they can be, and they taste even better than they look.
I adapted the original recipe to my own favorite tastes (of course!), and the biggest tip I can give you for making the preparation quick and easy is to get yourself a melon baller, if you don’t already have one. With one of those, all you have to do is boil and cool some golf ball size potatoes, halve them, and hollow them out. Then mix together the cooked potato “centers” with chopped boiled eggs, mayonnaise, sour cream, salt & pepper until they’re the consistency of slightly stiff potato salad, stir in the crisp, crumbled bacon and some chopped fresh chives, and pipe or spoon the mixture into the potato shells. Chill, top with more bacon and chives, and serve. If you nest them in a bed of edible greens, like parsley, and intersperse some oval grape tomatoes, it actually looks a little like a batch of exotic Easter Eggs!
I originally planned to add homemade sweet pickle and a little finely chopped celery – which is how my family makes potato salad – but I’m glad I didn’t. Because just as described in the recipe, these things are great. But you certainly could add either, if that appeals to you. Or add some finely chopped green or red pepper, substitute mashed ripe avocados for the sour cream, use mayo instead – basically whatever is in your favorite potato salad recipe – as long as you don’t leave out the bacon.
I decided to go ahead and share this recipe a couple of weeks before Easter was because I thought you might want to try them before serving them to your family and have time to do your own tweaking for just the right taste for your crowd. But I’m here to tell you that for me and mine, these are wonderful just as they are! And it turns out that they’re also perfect for anything from posh parties to pot lucks. In fact, if you used tennis ball sized potatoes instead of the baby ones and increased the rest of the ingredients proportionally, they’d make a great side dish for a sit-down meal as well.
So anyway, to finish the story, last year I got all those bazillion little cuties made up the day before the event – didn’t take that long. And I woke up Easter morning with a fever I didn’t want to take near the babies – and enough baby potatoes to feed an army. Well, THIS year, those babies are all walking around being even more adorable and I can’t wait to see how they like the baby potatoes. Actually, I’m practically drooling myself as I think of how delicious they are.
Nestled in a bed of parsley, these would be perfect for any party!
And I really can’t wait to see if they’ll actually eat them before everyone from Grandma Corene right down to the dozen or so great grands goes out into the big, green field to hunt for Easter Eggs!
And the chive flowers? I have a little patch of chives out back that come back every spring, and I discovered a few years back that those cute little lavender flower balls up top that I used to cut off and toss away are delicious! You just break apart the ball of tiny flowers into delicate – and delicious – singles for a little treat to float on soups or sprinkle on salads for just the slightest, delicate, mild onion flavor. And if you look very closely at one of the photos, you might just see my very first chive flower of the year perched atop one of my Deviled Potato Bites with Bacon. Enjoy! (I did.) Happy Spring!
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Baby Deviled Potato Bites with Bacon
- 12 small red or yellow potatoes
- 2 chopped hard boiled eggs
- 4 strips bacon, crisped and crumbled
- 2 T chives
- 3 Chive flowers
- 5 Tblsp mayo
- 1 tsp yellow mustard
- 3 Tblsp sour cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
Clean and gently boil the potatoes, skin-on, until sides are slightly firm, skin easily yields to a knife. Drain and cool slightly, then halve the potatoes and hollow out the center of each half, leaving enough around the outside to make them easy to handle – like a deviled egg.
Mash the potato “centers” in a medium-size bowl and add all remaining ingredients except the chive flowers and a l ittle of the crumbled bacon. Very lightly salt the little potato halves, then fill them with the potato mixture.
Refrigerate for several hours. Garnish with remaining bacon crumbles, chives, or thinly sliced green onion before serving.
NOTE: May also add finely chopped pickles, green pepper, any of your favorite potato salad ingredients.
Look for Queenie Cooks every week online and in the Sussex Surry Dispatch and other local papers for food-related recipes, stories, information, and fun. You never know what Queenie may be cooking up, but you can always count on at least one great recipe to try at home, generally for something you can prepare quickly, easily, and with just a few, common ingredients. Hey! We all have to eat. Let’s have some FUN with it!