Sometimes a cookbook title says it all. Justin Warner, Food Network Star winner and chef at Brooklyn’s notorious nosh spot Do or Dine, just released a dense collection of recipes by the very catchy name of The Laws of Cooking (And How to Break Them). If you’ve ever tried his inventive, harmonious and decidedly down-to-earth fare, you know you’ll need a copy of this instant hit. Try your hand at this seamless fusion of Caribbean food, deviled eggs and Scotch eggs, as only Warner can do. 

When I first moved to Bed-Stuy, in Brooklyn, I was living off of Fulton Street and Nostrand Avenue. All around that neighborhood are Caribbean joints pushing out roti, doubles, and salt cod bakes. It took me some time to muster up the courage to go into A&A Bake and Doubles. I leaned over the counter and asked a smiling man (whom I now know as Noel, the owner) for “One, please.”

“Which one?” “Just one. One of something.” “We have two things. A bake and a doubles.” “How can something called doubles be one thing?” “Do you like fish?” “Yes.” “Salt cod bake, with pepper.”

He handed me a fried bread (oddly called a bake) stuffed with salt cod, onions, and spicy peppers. It was the most wondrous mid-morning snack I’ve ever had, and it serves as the inspiration for this dish.

This paprika-spiced, salt cod–crusted, hard-boiled egg works like a hot dog of the sea, its spicy, deviled filling a combination of relish and mustard.

Note: I buy salt cod from Latin and Caribbean markets. I look for fully dried cod, sold open-air. The stuff in bags is generally an inferior fish, and because it isn’t fully desiccated, it has a shorter shelf life.

Reprinted with permission from The Laws of Cooking