Painted eggs are a traditional gift on Easter, a symbol of the holiday and spring revival. I offer to your attention the result of a little research and experiment with natural dyes - an article on dyeing Easter eggs using natural products.
- Large water container (for checking the freshness of eggs)
- Soda, soap, lemon, sponge (for washing eggs)
- Saucepan for preparing the infusions and boiling the eggs
- Containers for soaking (for example, wide mouth jars)
- Dried oak bark
- Dried nettle
- Hibiscus tea (karkade, Sudanese rose)
- Sunflower oil
- Clean cloth
- Chicken eggs
1. Check the freshness of the eggs
White eggs are painted faster and easier. We purposely took eggs of different colours to demonstrate how the paint is laid on both.
Eggs, raw or boiled, can be stored for a long time – about 2 months. The minimum shelf life of boiled eggs in the fridge is 4 days, maximum 45 days. On average, it is recommended to eat boiled eggs during a week.
To check the freshness, you just need to put them in a container with water. This should be done right before the use, as the eggs intended for storage should not be wetted.
Fresh eggs are heavier, they sink; rested are floating in the water; old ones are on the bottom.
Washed eggs are cleaner, safer for health, they are dyed better as soap and soda degrease the surface. Wash eggs in warm water.
As the cleaning means, take soap, soda and slices of lemon.
3. Before dyeing
Herbs are advised to keep no more than 2 years or to collect each season, so you can take the remains of dried nettle for painting the eggs.
In addition to the nettles, I used oak bark:
Hibiscus (karkade, Sudanese rose - different names for the same plant):
Oak bark and nettles can easily be bought in most drugstores. Hibiscus is sold as tea in ordinary shops and tea shops.
- it is required to completely cover the eggs with the liquid
- the less water and more dye, the more saturated is the colour
Add cold water to the dye and put it on the stove. Take a pot with thick walls — there's less risk that the eggs crack during boiling. Cook on slow fire. In most cases, the longer the components are cooked, the darker the colour. Remove from heat, allow to cool down completely and infuse (the longer it is infusing, the brighter and deeper the colour).
4. Cooking and painting
Take the eggs out of the fridge in advance, they have to warm up at room temperature, otherwise when cooking can crack the shell.
If you want eggs dyed smoothly, you can strain the infusion before cooking the eggs. Leaves, pieces of bark and other colouring elements may affect the colour. Salt the cool broth. Salt prevents eggs from running if they crack.
Like in the photo: the crack is there, but the protein is not spilt. Protein of boiled eggs can be partly painted if the shell has cracks, but the egg remains perfectly eatable.
Add vinegar (approximately 1 tablespoon per a litre of water), it will give colouring perseverance.
Put the eggs, making sure that the broth covers them entirely overcooking. Put it on the stove. It is better to boil eggs no longer than 10 minutes after water boils.
Remove from the stove.
5. Soaking to enhance the colour
When the eggs get cool, you can put them in the fridge. Leave the eggs in the infusion for a night, then the colour is brighter. The photo of the eggs that were in the infusion for only a half:
In the morning, take the eggs out and place them on plates to dry. One plate for one colour.
Immediately after drying, the paint is tender, it is easily damaged, so do not wipe eggs, unless you want to give a texture.
6. Adding lustre with sunflower oil
Sunflower oil enhance shine, it also helps to preserve the freshness of the product. Oil, like "lacquer", gives it a finished look, makes the colours deeper.
Wet the cloth in the oil, squeeze the excess and gently rub it into the eggs,. The excess can be removed with a dry cloth.
Nettle. It gives a light shade.
The shell of the eggs was rough, so the colour turned out speckled.
Painted with nettle and oiled -
Oak bark. Gives a rich brown colour with a bronze tint. Very easy to damage while wet.
Dyed with oak bark -
Dyed with oak bark and oiled -
Hibiscus. I made a very strong broth and the eggs dyed blue! Though, hibiscus gives red shades.
Dyed Sudanese rose (hibiscus) -
Dyed Sudanese rose (hibiscus) and oiled -
7. Eat with pleasure!
It will be a pleasure if you decide to like or comment the DIY.