How to Use Natural Dyes for Easter Eggs and More

Easter and eggs go together with beautiful colors and safe natural dyes.
You have the makings for some of the best eggs you will be proud to place in your Easter baskets right in your kitchen pantry or freezer.
You never have to use artificial colors which are derived from coal tar, as they can be toxic and contribute to ADHD.
If you begin with 2 cups of water, and 1 tbs. vinegar you are on your way to paint pallet heaven.
For natural blues uses red cabbage. Yes, four cups of red cabbage added to four cups water brought to a boil. Turn down the heat, cover and simmer for 60 minutes. Cool and strain into a glass jar or bowl, then add one tbsp. of vinegar for each cup of dyed liquid.
For natural orange mix two cups of yellow onion peels and enough water to cover by one inch. For a paler shade, mix two tablespoons of paprika per cup of water. Boil and simmer as above for cabbage.

For natural yellow, use one large carrot chopped in one cup of water. Or mix one tablespoon of turmeric per one cup of water for a vibrant shade. Boil and simmer as above.
For natural purple, soak the eggs in enough red wine to cover completely. For lavender colored eggs, soak them in grape juice mixed with a tablespoon of vinegar.

For natural red, use two cups of grated beets and two cups of water and cook as per instructions above.
For a pastel shade, soak the eggs in cranberry juice overnight.

To Color Eggs
Once you have the various dyes ready, hard boil eggs and allow to cool. Wash each egg gently with castile soap to remove any residue that prevents natural dye from coloring the eggs.
Add the eggs to each dye and refrigerate in the bowl, allowing it to steep overnight. Rub a few drops of coconut oil or olive oil to add shine.

Variations
If you purchase some beeswax from a craft store you can melt some down and then you can carefully dip the egg where you do not want the color to penetrate. Then you can design you own magically patterned eggs. Place rubber bands around the egg and you have stripes. Everything you use is safe and no chemicals were used and no ingredients that you can't pronounce or spell.
Following this thought, how about colored pasta in any shade you like by placing cooked pasta into a pan of water that you have placed your coloring agent in and then strained to remove your coloring agent. Place your pasta in - different pan for each color, and you will have a very welcome pasta layered salad that will brighten your Easter table. Your guests will give you the credit for adding the little touches to your meal that make it stand out and your celebration will be talked about for a long time after Easter.
Other Ideas

Cookie Cutters
Use Easter cookie cutters to cut out crustless bread and top with egg salad, tuna salad, or any sandwich spread you enjoy. Top with another cut out slice of bread if you wish. Kids especially love these little sandwiches. Try sliced pound cake slices topped with your favorite whipped topping and sprinkle with colored coconut. Doesn't take a lot of time to make these holiday specialties but they will be very much appreciated.
If you take the time to make this holiday colorful and imaginative not only will your guests feel very special but you will be satisfied that your Easter celebration was one for the memory books. When the day is done you do deserve an extra chocolate bunny just for you to enjoy. After all, making people feel cared for is what it is all about - and on holidays those extra touches you use may become the family's new favorite cherished custom.

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