There are still three weeks to go, but now’s the time to start thinking about Easter eggs: boiling, naturally dyeing and using what’s left so your Easter Egg Hunt doesn’t ruin your household budget.
Why such an early start? Well, for one thing, you don’t want to get caught paying premium prices for eggs in the week before Easter, when stores have a difficult time keeping them in stock. Then there’s this simple fact: older eggs are easier to peel once they’ve been boiled. Plus, if you’re going to naturally dye your eggs you’ll want to stock up on the various ingredients you’ll be using.
How To Boil Eggs
It’s not difficult to make a perfect boiled egg, provided you keep an eye on the timer. Just add eggs to a large sauce pan and cover them with 1 inch of cold water. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of salt into the water to help prevent cracks in the shells. Turn the heat to HIGH and bring the water to a boil. As soon as the water starts boiling, stir the eggs gently to center the yolk, then place a lid on the pot and remove it from the burner. Meanwhile, fill a sink with ice water. When the eggs have sat in the hot water for exactly 12 minutes, remove them from the water with a ladle or noodle spoon and gently place them in the ice water. Once fully cooled, transfer the eggs to the refrigerator.
Or, use the oven to make hard-cooked eggs for a crowd, like I do. Using this method you can cook three or four dozen at a time!
Natural Dyes For Easter Eggs
Although the FDA permits only seven artificial colors in the U.S. food supply — and this includes those food coloring vials and tablets used for Easter Egg dyes — they have been banned in the E.U. after a study found a positive correlation between these artificial colors and hyperactivity in children. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, artificial colors cause cancer. Not exactly the Easter goody we want to give our kids, is it?
Given those risks, it makes sense to use items we already know are safe to dye Easter eggs. Grapes, tea, cabbage, spinach, berries: all are wholesome foods, and all can be used as natural dyes for Easter eggs.
How To Use Eggs After Easter
Once your Easter Egg Hunt has come and gone, don’t just toss those eggs away! First, learn how to peel hard-boiled eggs easily. Don’t toss those egg shells, either: as with many reusable kitchen scraps, there are several ways to use egg shells around the house. After you have the eggs peeled, give them a good rinse and allow them to dry.