From the Deviled fods article.
Cecil says that it comes from " 1786, when it was used to describe a (highly seasoned) fried or boiled dish"
Then the reference he quotes claims “A name for various highly-seasoned broiled or fried dishes.”
Which it it? Boiled or broiled?
The Deviled Foods report is by the Straight Dope Science Advisory Board (SDSAB) and by Una, not by Cecil… and hence is being moved to the appropriate forum.
I checked. The original reference for the noun form is “broiled” as quoted. My sentence above was mis-typed by me, and the spell checker didn’t mind it since “boiled” is a word.
From the OED 2nd Edition Online:
As a sidebar - the verb form, not quoted in the article (but mentioned as an aside) refers to “grill(ing) with hot condiments”.
Although, come to think of it, deviled eggs are boiled.
Una, if you want a revision, let TubaDiva know… she’ll fix it for ya.