Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

I always love this time of year, the tulips are opening, you can smell honey suckle in the air and it is finally starting to warm up!  As spring time begins, we start to plan our Easter celebrations. Every Easter we plant our spring time garden as a family.  Like many other families one of our Easter traditions is dyeing Easter eggs. But unlike most American families, we do not use the small mini colored tabs to dye our eggs, we use all natural dye made from foods. My kids love to see how different foods create different colored dyes.  It is easy and inexpensive to make your own dyes, heres how:
(this is an actual picture of the eggs we dyed and served in my mothers backyard in FL., Easter 2012)

What You’ll Need:
Red Onion Skins (makes red or violet blue)
Yellow Onion Skins (Orange)
Carrot Tops (yellowish orange)
Beets (Pink)
Spinach Leaves (Green)
Purple Cabbage (Deep Purple)
Red Cabbage (Light Purple)
Canned Blueberries (Dark Blue)
Ground Cumin (Yellow)
Ground Turmeric (Yellow)
Strong Coffee (Brown)
1 – 3 dozen white organic pasture raised eggs (hard boiled)
5 – 12 glass (mason type) wide mouth jars – you will need one jar for each dye


What To Do:
You will need to place each ingredient in a separate pot and add enough water to just cover the fruit or vegetable; if you are using a spice you will need 2 – 4 tbs of the spice and 2 cups of water. Boil the water with the ingredients in the pots. When the water boils, reduce heat to a simmer and simmer for about 10 – 20 mins (the longer you cook the vegetables the darker the color). Once your desired color is reached, place the dyes in separate glass containers and add one tablespoon of vinegar per cup of dye.

Get Crafty:
Now its time to dye the eggs!  Hard boil your organic free range white eggs, let the eggs cool and then they are ready to dye.  The eggs will need to sit in the dye for a minimum of two minutes. They can also be placed in the refrigerator to soak overnight for deeper more vibrant hues. You can add designs on the eggs by using white crayon before dipping your eggs. You can give your eggs a shine by rubbing them with a little bit of olive oil.
If you want to get very artistic, like my beautiful daughter Rosie, then I you can gather flowers and fresh leaves fro, the yard and you can make designs on the eggs with these.  Simply wrap the egg in the leaves and or flowers then wrap them tightly in a cheese cloth and tie the cloth tightly around the egg.  Dip the egg wrapped in cheese cloth in the dye and let it sit in the dye for about 5 mins.  remove the egg from the dye, pat dye with a towel and then carefully remove the cheese cloth and leaves/flowers.

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