Thursday, March 20, 2008

Dying Easter Eggs: Some Tips and Tricks

Dying Easter eggs is a fun family tradition. Carrie and I have learned some tricks and tips over the years that can make the process more artistic and easier with young children. If you have toddlers, you may want to keep them away from the actual dying process; they frequently do not have enough patience to wait for the dying or drying time.

We highly recommend that PAAS Original Easter Egg Dying Kit. It comes with everything you need except vinegar, water, and a white crayon. If you already have food coloring and want to use that, go ahead. But if you don't want to have to measure or figure anything out, the PAAS kit contains nice little coloring tablets you simply dissolve in vinegar. If you have toddlers, a nice benefit of this handy kit is that it includes stickers! These stickers really do work better on dyed eggs than ordinary stickers--we've tried both.

Lay out all your supplies before involving your children if possible. Start the tablets dissolving in your cups, making sure newspaper or brown paper bags cover your work surface. Make sure your hardboiled eggs are cooled! Give the dye a good stir before starting with the eggs.

Spoons work just as well for lowering the eggs into the dye as the little metal holder that comes in the box. Simply lower the eggs in and wait for your chosen color! The dye works much more quickly at the beginning; those early eggs won't need to be in for long.

Artistic tips: use a white crayon on the egg before dying it. The designs will show up white and the rest of the egg will be colored. This is a nice trick for older children. You can also do half-n-half eggs: using the metal holder, lower the egg halfway into a color and keep it there until you're content with the color; then, when the first half is dry, dip the other half of the egg into a different color.

Stickers on the dyed Easter eggs are a nice place for your toddlers to join in. The eggs should be at room temperature and completely dry, or the stickers won't stick.

What to do with those colorful hard-boiled eggs? They make an easy Easter morning breakfast option if your children like them. If not, check out full tummies this week for other suggestions, like Creamed Eggs on Toast. Other possibilities include egg salad (Carrie and I frequently are both eating this for lunch on the same day even though we don't live near each other...weird, huh?) and tuna salad.

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