Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Elizabeth's Expert Advice: Dying Egg Shells for Easter

Easter is almost here! This means it's time for family dinners, biting the ears off chocolate bunnies (and feeling a little guilty about it), and hunting for Easter eggs - which means you'll love this week's advice on blowing out the insides of eggs and dying them, leaving only a pretty shell to hide amongst your knick knacks. A shell that, if left undiscovered or forgotten, will continue to stay pretty and not a rotting egg mess. Sound good? We think so. 

1. Your supply list is simple: Eggs (make sure they're white), pins or needles, water and containers, and your dye of choice. Here we used Kool-Aid instead of fooling with food coloring or boxes of dye, but the choice is yours. Kool-Aid is simpler than many dyes in that it only requires water - no vinegar. 

2. Using a strong pin or needle, poke a small hole in the top of the egg (the smaller end). The hole should be several millimeters across, but no more.

3. Flip the egg over and on the bottom, poke another, larger hole. This is where the white and yolk will come out, so make sure you give them enough room - perhaps a centimeter or so. Treat your egg very carefully as it's easy to crack or even completely smash the shell during this step. 

4. Holding the egg over a bowl with the smaller hole on top, gently blow into it! Once the whites start to emerge you can just shake the egg until empty. 

5. Carefully, but thoroughly, wash and rinse the shells of any whites or yolk.

6. Mix your dyes! If you're using Kool-Aid, assemble your containers and pour each packet into a different one. Add a cup of water to each container, give or take. Less water will result in more vibrant eggs, more will give you soft pastels. 

7. Drop your egg in! You'll notice that it floats on top because it's hollow - just push it down into the water with a spoon until it fills up and stays put. 

8. Allow your egg to soak, varying times according to desired color saturation. This bright persimmon-colored egg soaked for about a minute. 

9. Pull the egg out with a spoon and let the dye drain out of the bottom.

10. Lay it down to rest and dry, handling it as little as possible until the dye sets. It helps to place a cloth or paper towel under your egg carton, since any remaining water in the egg will drip down. 

11. Let the hiding and hunting begin! 

Happy Wednesday, everyone! 

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