year, for all too few years, a 78 rpm phonograph record
of Jimmy Durante singing “Yankee Doodle Bunny” blared
as my daughter scampered through the house hunting
for Easter eggs.
There was no search in our house this past Easter, no tyke in pajamas with
teddy bears depicted on them rummaging.
There was just my wife, Jo-Ann, and me (and the dogs). Our daughter, Lisa,
was a spoil sport. Just because she’s now grown up and married, she
did not come over to search for eggs. Hmmmmph!
We did, nonetheless, boil eggs that weekend. We didn’t dunk them in
egg dye and I — er, I mean, Peter Rabbit — didn’t hide
them. But the end use of the boiled eggs was the same as before: a few were
treats for the dogs, and the rest formed the main ingredient of eggs goldenrod,
for the humans.
Eggs goldenrod is a dish that has long been out of vogue. My wife learned
how to make it from her parents. It’s the whites of hard-boiled eggs,
cut or torn into bite-sized pieces, creamed, ladled on toast (or a toasted
English muffin), and topped with the yokes of the boiled eggs that have been
crumbled with a fork. It’s served with sausage and/or bacon.
Our culinary tradition does defy cholesterol warnings, and as such is a gastronomic
indulgence, not suited to regular consumption.
We began our custom simply because it seemed to be a good way of using the
boiled eggs that had served as the booty in the hunt.
There is one advantage to not coloring the eggs anymore. The boiled eggs
would crack when we applied crayon scribblings and decals to them, and food
coloring would seep in. We would never have a plate of eggs goldenrod without
streaks of purple and green and red on the whites.
The only coloring now is the turmeric I add to make the cream sauce slightly
Some recipes for eggs goldenrod call for adding paprika to the sauce. We
add garlic powder. My wife is Italian, and we add garlic to just about everything.
Other recipes for eggs goldenrod prescribe use of cheddar cheese or dry mustard
in the sauce.
A 1942 edition of Fannie Farmer’s “Boston Cooking School Cook
Book” in Jo-Ann’s collection includes a recipe for eggs “a
la Goldenrod.” As in editions going back to 1918, the recipe calls
for the whites being finely chopped, representing a rash departure from Jo-Ann’s
The book also says: “If using Curry Sauce, add 1/2 cup cooked rice
From a cookbook published in 1912, when presentation meant as much as how
the dish tasted, comes this recipe for “Beauregard Eggs”:
“Prepare a cup of white, or cream sauce, and stir into this the whites
of four ‘hard-boiled eggs,’ chopped fine. Toast and arrange in a
serving dish bits of bread, cut to liken the petals of a daisy, having the pedals
about three inches in length. Spread the sauce on the buttered toast and press
the yolks, seasoned with salt and pepper, in the centre to form the centre of
the daisy. Garnish with salt and pepper between the petals.”
The next recipe in that book, “Practical Cooking and Serving,” is
one for “Egg Vermicelli,” which instructs:
“Spread rounds of moistened, or buttered toast with the preceding white
mixture and sift the yokes over the top. Mix chopped chicken, ham, or mushrooms
into the sauce, if convenient.”
The book does, also, offer the basic recipe for “Golden Rod Toast.”
In preparing the dish, I do stray somewhat from the recipe imparted to Jo-Ann
by her parents, which includes the preparation of roux. On Sunday, I’ll
start out by sautéing bits of portobello mushrooms in butter, then
adding half-and-half or cream, dumping in a package of Knorr’s powdered
white sauce, sprinkling in garlic powder and turmeric, stirring the contents
frequently as it comes to a gentle boil, turning the heat down once the sauce
has thickened, adding the egg whites, and, when it’s bubbling and appears
hot, letting it cook some more. Creamed dishes, if served at once upon bubbling,
are apt to be only lukewarm.
Right before turning off the heat is the time to pour in some sherry, and
It goes well with a mimosa (orange juice and champagne).
The "55-Plus" column
is written especially for those over the age of 55, by a veteran California
journalist who is himself eligible for the club. Roger M. Grace has written
and edited newspapers for more than four decades, and has been a lawyer for
more than three.