Paprika looked good but didn't come through
Well, I wanted to finish up all the eggs today but I can’t find my blueberries. Have to dig in the other freezer.
Today I tried beets, spinach, grape juice and paprika. All had disappointing results. (I also tried Kool-Aid but that isn’t natural and will get its own post – that one worked great!)
I really expected the beets to work well since when I make pickled red beets and eggs they work just fine, but that is with shelled eggs so I’m sure that makes a difference. I took a can of beets and boiled it for fifteen minutes. I removed the beets and then split the juice up into two glasses. I added 1 T of vinegar to the one glass. This was the only experiment so far where the vinegar made a difference. The beet egg with the vinegar was darker than the without vinegar egg, but not by much. This was a very pale pink.
I pulled the beet juice out later in the day and both kinds dyed lightly while cold, but were better warmed. Not much difference from the first time.
I’m thinking I may cook an egg in with the beets tomorrow to see what happens.
Spinach: Glass with Vinegar is on the Right
Well, again I thought this would work better than it did. Perhaps more spinach is necessary. I used 2 cups of water and 8 oz of frozen spinach. I boiled it for 15 minutes and then strained out the spinach in a cloth. I squeezed the cloth to get the juice out and then divided the liquid in half. (I composted the spinach.) I added 1 T vinegar to one batch. I got very little color even at 10 minutes of dye time – pale yellow-green at best. Not much difference with or without vinegar – eggs almost looked ivory. I did not keep this one to try again cold because it dyed so badly the first time. And it smelled. PU.
Spinach at 10 minutes dye time - bottom one is with vinegar
This one smelled good cooking
OK, this one just came to me and I wondered what would happen. I’ve had several shirts ruined with grape juice so I thought maybe it’d make a good dye. It did. But the color was scary. I microwaved two cups of 100% purple grape juice straight from the bottle for 2 minutes each until they were hot. I added 1 T vinegar to one cup.
Well, the eggs dyed just fine but they turned out gray. And a little mottled. I remember that the purples in the purchased dye kits do this too sometimes – have grains of red or blue in them even after the whole thing is dissolved. My without vinegar egg cracked big time because I dropped it into the cup when I burned my fingers on the juice. <sigh> The vinegar made a little difference in this egg too, but not substantially. The juice did not dye well cold but it could be reheated after using with similar results to the original heating. (4/4 update – Scott really liked the way these eggs looked. He thought they looked purple, not gray so perhaps it is a personal call. They did look MORE purple when you put them next to the other colors.)
I think these eggs would be wonderful for Halloween with a bright orange egg. But for Easter, well, I’m just not sold on it.
Grape Juice: The cracked front egg is without vinegar
Paprika: Fast Color
I picked up a cheap bottle of Paprika for this project just to see what would happen. I put 1/4 C of paprika in 1 cup of water and microwaved it for 3 minutes till it was bubbling. I added 1 T vinegar and dropped in an egg. Even the 1 minute egg showed some color and at 10 minutes it was definitely – brownish yellow. I was hoping for red. <sigh again> Even the blue crayon was dyed brown with this dye. Very odd.
Paprika - not red
So, that was day 3. If I can find my blueberries tomorrow they will make the final dye lot. If I can’t find them I’ll have to improvise with something else. I want to wrap this up so we can eat the eggs before they go bad. Deviled eggs, here we come!