Dyeing easter eggs is an ancient tradition, and there are many methods of dying them. We all know the process of submerging eggs into synthetic easter egg dyes, but have you ever considered dyeing easter eggs naturally?
My family has fallen in love with a technique involving red cabbage, vinegar, pantyhose and leaves. This technique renders absolutely gorgeous, unique easter eggs that will have your family and friends swoon.
Whenever I dye eggs this way and post pictures of them on social media, I get more likes and comments than any other things I share.
Although it involves a little more preparation than simply using synthetic dyes, it's quite easy. If you involve kids with it, you'll be the hit of the neighborhood!
What you need:
8-12 white eggs, uncooked
one gallon of water
one red cabbage
splash of distilled white vinegar
pantyhose or cheese cloth
rubber bands or string
small leaves like parsley, bleeding heart, sweet cicely
Get your hands on eggs. I realized it would have worked better with white eggs, but since my chickens only produce brown ones, we went with those.
Cut a red cabbage in pieces, core and all, and throw it in a pot with water. I used about a gallon of water.
Bring to a boil, put a lid on it, and let it simmer for one hour.
In the meantime prepare your eggs. This involves going outside and finding some cool leaves, small ones that fit over your egg. I used bleeding heart and sweet cicely, but you can use parsley and other cool looking leaves.
Get pantyhose or cheesecloth and cut it in small pieces to wrap the eggs in.
Put a leaf on the egg with the smooth side touching the surface of the egg, and then put the pantyhose tightly over it to make the leaf lie flat on the egg. Be careful with that! Don't squeeze the egg to much, otherwise it will break and drip all over you.
Then tie a knot to secure the pantyhose close to the egg, making sure the leaf is secured that way.
I had my five-year-old daughter help me with that. She dressed in a princess gown for the occasion. If you can find a little girl dressed as a princess, you will succeed in the endeavor of making these beautiful eggs.
Next, drain the cabbage pieces from your pot (feed those to your chickens or pigs, and if you don't have critters, put the cabbage in the compost).
Put a few tablespoons of white distilled vinegar into your now colorful cabbage water.
Gently lower the eggs wrapped in their pantyhoses into the water. Remind your princess-helper to be careful with this so the eggs won't break or the princess won't burn herself.
Bring this to a boil, and then turn it down to a simmer. Simmer it for 15 minutes, meaning you are hard boiling your eggs.
At this point, you are supposed to leave this all sitting for at least an hour. I refrigerated everything overnight, because I didn't like the color yet.
Next day, cut the pantyhose away, take the leaf off, and admire your beautiful eggs.
Boast about them! Post pictures! People will freak out! If they just knew how easy this is!!!
If you like my blog and my tutorials, you can download my free e-book I wrote, with three more tutorials on homesteading skills: