April 7, 2012

All natural Easter egg colouring


The technique of herb-imprinted eggs in onionskin infused water is one of oldest and most unusual you’ll find in the western world. Commercial dyes are available, but this old-fashioned natural method can create beautifully golden-red eggs with artistic imprints of natural herbs and flowers.

Usually, colouring eggs is done on Good Friday or Saturday before the Easter.
The following is a process for of herb imprinting and colouring in onionskin infused water for one dozen eggs. 
1. Prepare the dye with the onionskins:
In a stainless steel saucepan, place skins of 10 big yellow (Spanish) onions and 2 tbsp of white vinegar in about 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for about half an hour. Cool and leave it aside for couple of hours or overnight to infuse.
2. Prepare eggs with herbs:
First you'll need some old pantyhose cut in 3"- 4" (8-10 cm) strips with no holes, closed at one end with a tread or tied in knot and a bunch of small garden herbs and flowers (parsley, basil, cilantro, clover etc..) that can stick to the egg tightly.
  
Place one herb on one side of your egg. Wrap the egg with pantyhose strip that is closed on one side.
                                                                                          
        

When herb is nicely placed on one side of the egg, wrap it tightly and carefully so your herb is still stuck on the egg. Stretch the pantyhose and close the other side tightly. The tighter the pocket of the pantyhose is around the egg, the better the herb will appear on the egg.



Continue with this process until all the eggs are used. When you get more experienced, you'll be able to place even three to four herbs on the egg and tie it tightly.



Now, the prepared eggs are ready for colouring in onionskin infused water.
Put your pot with onionskin back on the stove until it starts to boil. Turn down the heat and continue simmering. Start adding prepared eggs until you fill the pot. Simmer it for about 10-20 minutes, checking on the colour of the eggs, every so often.


 










When egg is ready, take it out carefully and cool it down a bit until it is easy to handle. Take off the pantyhose, place in a paper towel with a little bit of oil and rub the egg until the herb is off and all the egg is nice, shiny and polished.



Tips:
-A couple of weeks before Easter, start saving onionskins in a plastic bag in the refrigerator until they are ready to use. Or buy a bag of onions and peel them all.
-Do not use any porous (wood, ceramic, plastic, etc.) materials as they can be coloured by the dye

-Leftover cooked eggs can be used later in many tasty dishes, that I'll post here soon.

Happy Easter!

2 comments:

Cassidy Sterry said...

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Zexxy's wife said...

Thank you Cassidy,
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Your blog is quite unusual and unique and I love your stories!