Easter is almost here. If you celebrate the holiday you may be curious to know how you could dye your eggs naturally rather than using harsh artificial dyes, especially if you eat the eggs afterwards (which we all should do as eco friendly consumers!) Here’s how you can dye your eggs the natural way.
Add all the eggs that will be a particular color to a pan, in a single layer, and cover them with water. Don’t fit them in too tightly, there should be room around each egg. Add one teaspoon of vinegar plus the dye ingredient for the color you want (see below). Bring the water to a boil, reduce and simmer for 15 minutes.
If you like the color, you’re done–remove the eggs and let them dry. If you want a more intense color you’ll have to keep them in the dye overnight in the refrigerator. If you do that you should first temporarily remove the eggs, strain the dye through a coffee filter to remove any solid matter that could cause spots on your eggs, and then put the eggs back before putting them in the fridge.
Once your eggs are dyed and dry, you can add a little cooking oil to their surface to make them shiny, since they will otherwise not be glossy.
OK, so what ingredients should you use for various colors? You can get the entire rainbow of colors from ordinary kitchen ingredients. Here they are:
Red: canned cherries with their juice, raspberries, or pomegranate juice
Orange: paprika, chili powder, cooked carrots, or yellow onion skins
Yellow: ground turmeric (but be careful with staining other surfaces), ground cumin, orange/lemon peels, or green tea
Green: fresh spinach leaves or liquid chlorophyll (dietary supplement)
Blue: red cabbage leaves, purple grape juice or canned blueberries
Lavender: small amount of purple grape juice
Violet-Blue: red wine or small quantity of red onion skins
Pink: beets, cranberry juice, or red grape juice
Brown: strong coffee, black walnut shells, or black tea
You may need to experiment a bit, since some ingredients will produce more powerful dyes than others.