The perfect deviled egg is deceptively hard to get right. The trick is to separate the egg from its shell without leaving pock marks in the egg whites.
Begin by placing fresh, uncooked eggs on their sides in the refrigerator for seven to 10 days, turning them every day or two to keep the yolk centered. The time period will help the egg separate more easily from the shell membrane.
Bring the eggs to room temperature to prevent cracking when they are immersed in the boiling water.
Place the eggs in a strainer in a stock pot to avoid having the eggs sit against hot spots on the bottom of the pot.
Fill the pot with enough water to cover the eggs, plus an inch. Add a teaspoon of salt for every half-gallon of water. That will also help break the membrane.
Bring the water to a boil, then add the eggs, bring the water to a boil again, cover and remove from the heat. Let cook for five minutes.
Remove the eggs, crack the shells thoroughly and return the eggs to the water for another eight minutes. This method helps keep the yolks from overcooking and turning green.
Prepare an ice bath and submerge the eggs. This should cause the whites to shrink and pull away from the shell. The cold water will seep in through the cracked shell, also making it easier to peel the eggs.
Chill the peeled eggs for an hour or so to let the yolks cool further.
Cut a yolk-sized stencil out of a piece of paper to use when dusting the eggs with paprika.
To get the deviled eggs to sit on a plate, shave a sliver of egg white off of the bottom.
Recipe for the Classic Deviled Eggs
Source: The Baltimore Sun, 3.28.12