Natural Easter Egg Dye: It Really Worked!

31 Mar

Thanks to two bloggers working together, Leandro and I were inspired to try our hand at natural Easter egg dyes and it was so, so, much fun!

Boil, boil, toil and trouble

Boil, boil, toil and trouble

The road to this adventure was winding

Out, out, damn spot (cutting beets)

Out, out, damn spot (cutting beets)

My friend, Ashley, posted a “fun Easter craft” on the Hot, Cheap & Easy Facebook page recently. It linked to Lisa Leake’s  100 Days of Real Food   a terrific blog about her adventures, discoveries and triumphs eliminating processed food from her family’s diet. The original post was Natural Easter Egg Dyes  and the guest blogger was Christina Le Beau whose blog, Spoonfed, covers her quest to raise children who are literate about food. Women after my own heart.

Ready, steady, go - note the glorious colors already on the Restoration Farm Eggs

Ready, steady, go – note the glorious colors already on the Restoration Farm Eggs

I got really interested in the vegetable colorings that Christina proposed, so I got my beets, turmeric, and blueberries together (could not locate the chlorophyll tablets! help?).

The Mad Scientist at work

The Mad Scientist at work

The eggs were from Donna Sinetar‘s flock at Restoration Farm (these eggs are spectacular looking and tasting and as free range as you can get, but ironically enough, they are going to be a witch to peel tomorrow for the deviled eggs tomorrow precisely because they are so very fresh — see tips on the Perfect Hard-Boiled Egg) which already came in an array of colors, from light blue, to rosy cream, to creamy white to light brown.

Nubbly, mottled, beautiful color

Nubbly, mottled, beautiful color

So we strained and made some wax designs and dipped and made richly beautiful colored eggs, each with their own personality and imperfections that made them interesting. Leandro thought it was the coolest experiment ever and has a real problem with the idea that tomorrow we will peel at least half of them for deviled eggs. A very important lesson in the ephemeral art that is cooking real food….

All my eggs are in one basket!!!!

All my eggs are in one basket!!!!

Coloring Easter Eggs the Natural Way

1 dozen hard-boiled eggs, cooled (make patterns with crayons or wax pencils before dipping)

Three pots, each filled with 2 Cups water

HOT PINK – 1 large beet, chopped (peel can stay on)

YELLOW 1 Tbs turmeric

VIOLET BLUE – 12 oz frozen blueberries

2 tsp white vinegar

crayons or wax pencils

Put one coloring ingredient in each pot. Bring to a boil, turn off and let steep five minutes. Strain into three separate bowls (removing chunky bits*). Add one tsp vinegar to berry and beet bowls. Start dipping and cross-dipping until you achieve the colors you like. Dry in the egg carton and add any decorations you see fit.

Thanks again to Christina and Lisa and Ashley for showing us the way!

* If Christina has a chance to respond I’d like to know what she did with the chunky bits of berry and beet after simmering out the color (I threw them out as they were tasteless and we don’t have a food compost going – yet)….

A Happy Easter to those who celebrate it, and a wonderful Spring to everyone as we commemorate the ancient fertility and renewal celebrations of this time of year.

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22 Responses to “Natural Easter Egg Dye: It Really Worked!”

  1. Chica Andaluza March 30, 2015 at 4:24 am #

    What fun – am going to do this to take to my parents’ for Easter Sunday lunch!

    • Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy March 30, 2015 at 8:36 am #

      Enjoy! We are going to try some new color sources today…red onion and yellow onion peels. I will keep you “posted” on the developments….

  2. vkhanson April 15, 2014 at 2:49 pm #

    Reblogged this on Amanda's Bequest Bed & Breakfast-a Heritage Farmstay and commented:
    I just saw this blog about natural dye for Easter eggs. We are SO going to do this this week. The “gals” have been supplying us with plenty of eggs. I have beet powder (I dried and milled beet slices) and will save some onion skins (be sure to read the comments). I also have some Nori (Seaweed) that I’m going to try for the green. anyway, I thought you might enjoy reading about this natural way to color eggs. I can’t stand food dyes.

    • Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy April 15, 2014 at 5:52 pm #

      Thanks for the reblog and the visit! My experiment tomorrow will be with canned beets as I was not able to find fresh today when I shoppe around….I never liked canned beets, but am willing to give this a try for efficiency’s sake…will keep you “posted.”

  3. Bluejellybeans April 10, 2014 at 5:01 pm #

    ¡Qué casualidad Natalia! La semana que viene voy a decorar huevos de pascua por primera vez, asi que tu post me viene fenomenal!! 🙂

  4. cecilia April 10, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    Wonderful, i am going to send this on to my daughters in law. The natural looking colours are so good.. have fun.. c

    • Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy April 10, 2014 at 4:21 pm #

      They were so pretty…Leandro really enjoyed the whole process. And so did I!!!!

      • cecilia April 10, 2014 at 4:50 pm #

        I have not done anything like this is years, the joy of having children.. Leandro sounds like such a lovely young man.. c

      • Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy April 10, 2014 at 5:42 pm #

        He is really a joy….I love this age!!!!

  5. Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy April 10, 2014 at 6:02 am #

    Reblogged this on Hot, Cheap & Easy and commented:

    Note to readers on reblog: As you get ready to color eggs for Easter (or your preferred pagan Spring holidays), try natural coloring…we had so much fun with this last year that we will be doing it again this year!

  6. kathryningrid April 1, 2013 at 6:50 pm #

    Such pretty, pretty eggs!

  7. Conor Bofin March 31, 2013 at 5:47 pm #

    I have done 1,000 year old eggs. Hard boiled, she’ll cracked and soaked in tea.
    Must do them again, it’s been years.

    • Natalia at Hot, Cheap & Easy March 31, 2013 at 8:17 pm #

      I’ve done those too…we kind of got that effect with a few of our eggs this time…looked conveniently like red spider webs, and since a certain arachnid superhero continues to be popular around here…it’s all good! Happy Easter!

  8. thewindykitchen March 31, 2013 at 5:44 pm #

    these look great! my mom uses onion skins, but I always forget to save them. I may try beets for the Orthodox Easter!

  9. Ashley March 31, 2013 at 9:22 am #

    I’m so excited to hear that this was a success and that Leandro had so much fun. They look amazing!

  10. twbarritt March 31, 2013 at 6:31 am #

    What fun, and terrific results! Happy Easter!

  11. Mad Dog March 31, 2013 at 5:26 am #

    Excellent work!
    My 82 year old Greek neighbour uses yellow onion skins and white vinegar to make her eggs go bright red. It sounds odd but it works 😉

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