Get Your Van Gogh on for Easter!
We are creative people here as Island Thyme Soap Company. This Easter weekend, instead of highlighting some of our creations, we thought we'd share some ideas for YOUR creations! The tradition of painting hard-boiled eggs during springtime pre-dates Christianity. In many cultures around the world, the egg is a symbol of new life, a rebirth. Like Spring itself, Easter is a time of renewal.
Vincent Van Gogh once said, "I feel there is nothing more artistic that loving people." What better way to show love of family than to gather together and color some Easter Eggs?
Skip the store bought egg dying kit. Mother Nature's palette is always the best source of colors.
We found this lovely list of natual egg colorants over at BHG:
Cut 1/4 head of red cabbage into chunks and add to 4 cups boiling water. Stir in 2 Tbsp. vinegar. Let cool to room temperature and remove cabbage with a slotted spoon.
Peel the skin from 6 red onions and simmer in 2 cups water for 15 minutes; strain. Add 3 tsp. white vinegar.
Peel the skin from 6 yellow apples. Simmer in 1-1/2 cups water for 20 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar. Simmer 4 oz. chopped fennel tops in 1-1/2 cups of water for 20 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Take the skin of 6 yellow onions and simmer in 2 cups water for 15 minutes; strain. Add 3 tsp. white vinegar.
Stir 2 Tbsp. paprika into 1 cup boiling water; add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Rich yellow: Simmer 4 oz. chopped carrot tops in 1-1/2 cups water for 15 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Mustard-yellow: Stir 2 Tbsp. turmeric into 1 cup boiling water; add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Various shades: Steep 4 bags of chamomile or green tea in 1 cup boiling water for 5 minutes.
Pale yellow: Chop 4 oz. goldenrod and simmer in 2 cups water for 20 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Faint yellow: Simmer the peels of 6 oranges in 1-1/2 cups water for 20 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. vinegar.
Simmer 2 Tbsp. dill seed in 1 cup water for 15 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar.
Add 1 tablespoon vinegar to 1 cup strong coffee.
Faint pink: Chop 4 oz. amaranth flowers and simmer in 2 cups water; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar. Simmer the skins from 6 avocados in 1-1/2 cup water for 20 minutes; strain. Add 2 tsp. white vinegar. Mix 1 cup pickled beet juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar.
Dark pink: Cut 1 medium beet into chunks and add to 4 cups boiling water. Stir in 2 Tbsp. vinegar and let cool to room temperature; remove beets.
Mix 1 cup grape juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar.
Let's Paint Some Eggs!
Place a single layer of washed eggs in a non-metal pot with the natural dye. Add 2 tablespoons vinegar to 1 quart water. Bring it to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove the pot from burner.
If you like a more pastel color like the lighter blue in the above image, dab off excess color with a paper towel and set the eggs on a rack to dry. If you'd like to deepen the color, leave the eggs in the pot until cool. To get even richer shades, gently put the cooled eggs in a bowl, strain the dye water, and pour it over the eggs. Store the submerged eggs in the fridge for a few hours or overnight.
If you love the look of the gold speckles on the robins egg blue eggs in the above image, all you need is some edible paint. Most places that carry bakery supplies carry edible paint. Once the eggs have dried completely, lay them on a few sheets of paper towels. Dip a small dry stiff bristle brush (used only for food) into the paint and run your index finger along the bristles above the eggs. Let the paint dry before splattering the opposite side.
If you are displaying your egg art, make sure not to eat any eggs that have sat out longer than two hours. If you plan on eating them, make sure to keep them cold. Hard boiled eggs in the shell can be kept safely in the refrigerator up to one week.