Red cabbage Easter egg dye that renders Danila teal blue eggs.
Text & Photo © CM Cordeiro & JE Nilsson 2022
I love colored eggs. In Asian tradition, red dyed hard boiled eggs would be seen at month-old baby celebrations and birthdays. As a child growing up in Singapore, I more loved looking at the red eggs sitting in a pile than eating them. The other festive occasion where colorfully painted hard boiled eggs would make an appearance was at Easter. A memorable childhood event held in the convent in which I grew up, was the annual Easter egg hunt in the school garden. The decorative hard boiled eggs looked so cheery and bright that having found one such egg in that large school garden was a prize in itself. Chocolate Easter eggs the size of my little girl head came in the later years of my childhood, and those were seen wrapped in shiny tin foils and placed on the kitchen table from my parents, for the unwrapping, and eating.
I made colored Easter eggs in two different ways this year. The first batch of colored eggs (pictured below) I made using food grade dyes, and the second batch (featured in the video above) I made using red cabbage as a natural dye. If short of time, then food grade dyes would be quicker than natural dyes.
I used about a half head of red cabbage, boiled in about 1 liter of water, a pinch of salt, and a tablespoon of vinegar. The eggs were boiled before soaking in the red cabbage bath. I had several herbs for print to choose from at home, but decided with using only parsley leaves. I thought a single printed pattern would look prettier, and less tiring to the eyes than too many competing patterns. The parsley leaves were bound together with the eggs in a stocking wrap, and submerged in the cabbage bath for a couple of hours. I had the initial thought to leave the eggs soaking overnight, but five hours later, they turned a beautiful Danila teal blue. I fancied the shade of deep teal and decided to take them out and unwrap them. I also preferred the eggs matte, otherwise a quick wipe over the egg shells with olive oil would bring some gloss to the surface.