Saturday, May 7, 2011

Easter Eggs

Year 1: A- and family
I've dyed eggs with natural ingredients the last few years. I looked at various sites online for ideas but it requires a lot of experimentation, which makes it much more entertaining than dye tablets. Some colors were flops (paprika did not produce anything) and some were really unexpected (like our red wine moon eggs). Here are the general guidelines to follow:

1 C juice
2 T vinegar
Mix together. Soak hard-boiled eggs for as long as you want, or overnight.

4 T spice
2 T vinegar
4 C water
Combine spice with water and vinegar.
Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
Eggs can be colored (and cooked) in the dye
Year 2: My family minus A-
while it is being prepared (make sure the water covers them entirely), or soak hard-boiled eggs in the dye after it is made.

Make a very concentrated cup of tea. Cool and mix in 2 T vinegar. Soak hard-boiled eggs for as long as you want, or overnight.

The Colors
Blue- blueberry juice
Pink- beet juice (used beet juice from canned beets; next time will use liquid from boiled beets)
Yellow/Gold- tumeric (works quickly; could do just a couple minutes for pale yellow)
Purple and gray, mottled- red wine (this created our moon eggs)
Brown- instant coffee (why not just boil a brown egg, you ask? I don't know, we had instant coffee so we tried it.)
Light green- green tea (was pale yellow at first but turned light green after being in the frig- but not in the dye- overnight)
Year 3: With friends
Red- raspberry tea (I think this is what we used the first time but it didn't work the second time; maybe it's the brand of tea?)
Reddish brown-onion skins

I left some of the eggs in dyes overnight in the frig. There was a film of color on some of them which I wiped off, but next time I will leave the film on and let it dry. Then just rinse it off the eggs when it's time to eat them.

You can wipe the eggs with oil to give them a sheen.

I used canning jars (with lids for the overnight storage) and small ladles and spoons for removing the eggs.

I want to try:
-liquid from boiled spinach for green (didn't work)
-grape juice for purple (didn't work)
-red cabbage for blue

TIP to try:
Rub egg shell with white vinegar before putting in dye

I used these sites as guides:
Onion skins-
Organic Valley natural dye

Sorrel Sauce

I just discovered the classic pairing of salmon and sorrel, and it is heavenly!

Sorrel Sauce
1 cup sorrel, stems removed
1 ramp or 1/2 T onion, finely chopped (I used a ramp which probably contributed to the heavenly-ness)
1 T butter
1 T cream
salt and pepper to taste

Heat butter over medium heat in a non-reactive pan (cooking acidic sorrel  in an aluminum or cast iron pan results in discoloration and gives it a metallic taste). When butter foams, add ramp and stir for a minute or two until soft. Add sorrel, stirring. It will melt to look almost like a puree. Add cream and stir until slightly thickened, add salt and pepper to taste.

Adapted from