Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Pickled Eggs


In the upper peninsula of Michigan, the locals are called Yoopers. In order for a troll (that's Yooper slang for someone that hails from south of Mackinaw City, i.e. "under the bridge") to claim official Yooperdom, it is the local legend that you have to live in the U.P. for at least 7 years. Thanks to my dual major as an undergrad, and then graduate school at Michigan Tech, which is located in the Keeweenaw Peninsula, I can declare myself a Yooper.

A favorite Yooper bar snack is pickled eggs - but not those sweet, beet colored ones you sometimes see in foodie magazines. It's a spicy pickled egg, that goes really well with cheap cold beer. If you can find it, some Wisconsin local brewery beer is best, like Point Beer or maybe some Rhinelander. Long before there were microbreweries, each little town in Wisconsin had their own brewery, like Steven's Point and their Point Beer, which is one of my favorites. Anyway, if you should find yourself in Wisconsin or have the good fortune of having a cheesehead friend that can bring you some back, that is good. If not, any cheap beer like Old Milwaukee or maybe Blatz would be good, make sure it is very cold. Leinenkugel used to be one of those kind of beers, too, but now it is more widely distributed since they were bought out by Miller, and it's got some boutique beers now and cost lots more. I had made the pilgrimage to Chippewa Falls a couple times as a college student (and even as a grown up) to tour the brewery. When I lived in the U.P. in the 80s, you could get a case of Leinenkugel Original in longneck bottles in one of those hard cardboard returnable boxes for $3.12, plus deposit. Ah, those were the days...

In Houghton, where MTU is located. there is a bar called the B&B which is arguably the most famous pickled egg place in the U.P. It's located on M26 on the way to Ontonagon, but it is still in town. The bar features a sticky floor, an unleveled pool table with crooked cues, and is frequented by locals. Most of them will be kind to you if you care to visit, but some do not like "appleknockers" (another yooper term for downstaters). The B&B used to serve a Wisconsin beer called "Gilt Edge", but it no longer exists. I think they serve Old Milwaukee in it's place. Back in the day, you could get a beer in a small pilsner glass (called a "shell" in Yooper speak) and a pickled egg for 80 cents. This was called a "boneless chicken dinner" by the locals. I know people that regularly make a pilgrimage to the B&B from downstate just for the pickled eggs, but I will save you the 500 miles each way by sharing their recipe that someone once gave me when I was a student.

Check out my method for how to make easy to peel hard boiled eggs,

Interested in other U.P. recipes?  How about a U.P. Style Pasty?


Yooper Style Pickled Eggs
printer friendly

Ingredients:
2 dozen hard boiled eggs (peeled)
4 cups vinegar
1 jar sliced jalapenos, including the juice
1 onion, chopped finely
1 cup water
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 tablespoon salt

Directions:
Put peeled eggs in a large glass jar with a lid. Put remaining ingredients in a large saucepan and boil for 10 minutes. Pour over eggs and let steep in the refrigerator for a minimum of 3 days. Serve eggs in a paper cupcake liner with Frank's Red Hot Sauce, black pepper and plenty of the jalapenos.



25 comments:

Adrienne said...

I still think it might have been a good ting at the roadhouse. Hey -maybe the roadshow. I see peole at whole foods going crazy for the hard-boiled eggs. seriosly... i think it should be done. i', workin on it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the memories. You definitely got it right. I spent many an early evening preparing at the B&B feasting on 3-4 eggs and shells of Gilt Edge cold. I was studying at the Tech from 82-86 and I recall 40 cent beers and 25 cent eggs, but I may be glorifying the good ole days? Your prices seem more believable. Thanks to google I have found and have been re-united with one of my true loves...B&B pickled eggs. I was heart broken knowing I would be seperated from them when I graduated. I was not able to convince them to give me the recipe. Thankfully for efforts I will get a chance to enjoy them again. I'll let you know how much I enjoyed them after a sample or two. To those who have not yet tried this delicacy. These eggs make all beer taste better but I agree cold and cheap works. Thanks

Anonymous said...

As a fellow Yupper and long time pickled egg fan I feel I should mention a trend that's sweeping through Marquette or at least at Remmies and the Dog house. It is called the One Eyed Keith where a pickled egg with tabasco is placed on a shot of Kesler(or similiar well whisky). It warms you up on a cold UP night

Anonymous said...

I own a bar/restaurant in northern wisconsin. The patrons love pickled eggs and cheap beer. I am going to try your recipe and see how well they go over. Thanks for the help.

C. said...

What fond memories your posting brings to mind! In the late 80's I backpacked Isle Royal and finished off my trip with a visit to that very bar where I enjoyed a Gilt Edge beer and pickled egg! Maybe it was a week of backpacking food, but that beer and pickled egg tasted SO amazing to me! It stands out as one of my favorite "foodie" memories. I can't wait to try your recipe! Thanks for the post!

Kathy T. Great said...

Wow--I can not believe you got this recipe! My grandparents live in Lake Linden, my parents and uncle went to MTU and my brother's about to graduate from there this weekend (he lives 2 blocks from the B&B). Ever since I was little I remember my dad insisting on stopping at the B&B to grab a jar of those pickled eggs on our way home. They don't sell them to go anymore--health department rules. It's a shame because we were going to bring him some. Now I can make them for him whenever I want! Thanks so much for this.

canning tomatoes said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I haven't tried to do pickled eggs.

ZeusyJ said...

Haha I think it's more the cheap beer makes the pickled eggs taste really really damn good!(beer munchies!) I'm not saying they aren't amazing, my dad uses this recipe I am pretty sure when he makes them, one drunken night between the two of us had a good dozen eggs sitting in our stomachs, sooo good, I am gonna make some right this instant to be honest. (: But I also have to say the Tabasco/egg/kessler shot sounds absolutely horrifying... bad experiences with kessler..

-Northern Cali, where the CHRON grows.

Anonymous said...

For years I have craved the B&B's pickled eggs every so often. I have pondered how to track down my long lost friend who had the recipe, etc. Google to the rescue! Your post really takes me back to fond memories. I made my first batch and they turned out great. Now my question is, how long will they keep before going bad? I love them, but two dozen is a bunch considering I'm the only one in my house that's eating them.

Mom said...

Glad you lioke the post. I have kept pickled eggs in the fridge for several weeks....they will last a long time. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, from one toot to another.

Alyssa said...

Hi! I recently got turned on to your blog because of your pickled egg recipe. I made them last week and they are delicious! I referenced you and your post in my own blog today and listed you in my "blogs I follow". Thanks for sharing your fun with us!
Alyssa
http://earthmuffinadventures.blogspot.com/2012/02/eggs-have-it.html

Anonymous said...

I also remember the B&B! I went to MTU in the 80s. Even during summer geo field camp, we'd hole up at the bar to ink in our notes, while eating eggs and drinking cheap beer. These eggs were simple but perfect. I still talk with my old school friends about them on occasion. Just finished making a batch of your recipe a few minutes ago. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Making my second double batch now.... very good!! We brought my older brother and Tech grad to the tasting at a sugar shack and he gave them the thumbs up. Can you add more eggs or is it better to make another batch??

Cynthia said...

Yes, I often add more eggs to the brine after we are done with a batch to make some more.

Anonymous said...

Loved the B&B eggs, but actually preferred the eggs from a bar on the other side of the bridge(ie Hancock. The big difference? They put some veggies in with theirs, so you also had a yummy salty crunch to enjoy with your egg and beer. I'm gonna make some and add some baby carrots, onions and cauliflower.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post and memories from home. I am a Michigan Native and love pickled eggs, but cant find them in New England where I am going to school, so I will be making a batch tonight! One question though, does anyone know the size of the jar for the jalapenos? I have seen varying recipes and want to make it as authentic as possible, Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I really need to dredge up the Quincy Hotel pickled egg recipe. I should know it by heart considering we would go through about 10 dozen for every party we had. It has been 25+ since I made them, however...

Donna said...

I'm a Tech grad from '88, and I haven't had a pickled egg in probably 20 years. Sure do miss them! Now that we raise chickens, we have an overabundance of eggs, and I happened to see on Facebook that someone had posted pickled eggs that they had made. That of course sent me off on a quest to see if I could find the B&B recipe for them. Thank you so much for posting this! I can't wait to make some.

R- said...

Now-a-days you can get local beer straight from Houghton, via the Keweenaw Brewing Company. Very good.

Anonymous said...

Pickled eggs using this recipe will last nearly a year if refrigerated. I've been told by some, they will last even longer!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the memories everybody...I will be heading out the door in just a few minutes to get the fixins to make a batch of these beauties.....
How big of a jar of pickled jalapenos should we use?
JC

Cynthia said...

I use 12 oz. jar of jalepenos in the recipe

Anonymous said...

Is the vinegar used apple cider vinegar or white vinegar. We are going to a "Yooper" party for a 7o yr old friend who grew up in Gwinn and would like to make these for him. My son went to Tech. and brought a similar recipe home but I don't know which vinegar to use. Thanks.

Cynthia said...

Either white or cider vinegar will work.