Friday, April 18, 2014

Easter Fun

This is a post from 2012 but I thought you might like to know how to get these beautifully dyed eggs, so I'm reposting.

We managed to have a couple of days of fun for our Easter vacation.  Although we go back to school tomorrow and face state testing this week, I was able to forget the stress of work for a few days.  All three sons and their families visited on and off over the weekend.  

As I write this, the local news is reporting the egg knocking competitions in our parish.  The children did get an opportunity to go to the Cottonport Egg Knocking on the Bayou for the egg hunt.  When they returned, we took naps then woke to our own egg fun.  We dyed about seven dozen yard eggs.  

The little girls really had fun with egg dying.  Jenny brought a kit that the grandchildren used to dye their eggs.  I, however, dye way too many eggs to play with dying one at a time.  Instead, I've perfected my own egg dying technique, which I really like because I'm able to get brilliant, rich colors.  

To dye eggs, I first place a towel in the bottom of a large gumbo or stock pot.  Carefully putting the eggs in the bottom of the pot, I add hot tap water to cover the eggs and turn the stove on high.  Once the water comes to a boil, I turn the heat down to keep the eggs from moving around.  When the eggs are cooked, I move the entire pot out to a table on the lawn where I've already put some large glass bowls, Wilton food dye, and vinegar.  The recipe of one/eighth cup vinegar, 1/8 teaspoon food dye, and hot water to cover the eggs in the bowl seems to work very well.  I like to dissolve the food dye in the vinegar with about one cup of water before adding the eggs.  I use the hot water from the pot because the eggs and water are the same temperature and the eggs are less likely to crack.  

Note that most of my bowls are deep rather than wide, so that I can put in four or five eggs without having to add a great deal of water.  I also gently stir the eggs so that they are evenly dyed.  When the eggs are dyed to my satisfaction, or I simply get tired of waiting, I put them on the table to dry.  I've found that placing them in the crack between the boards is especially useful since the eggs don't roll around and the space allows for faster drying.  I also like to store the eggs in a carton because they are less likely to break or hit against each other.  

Why all this egg dyeing?  Because knocking, or pocking as many people say, is a tradition in central Louisiana that is fun.  I love that the elderly people enjoy it so much.  When our children were young, we spent most of our Easter Sunday visiting from house to house, Easter eggs in tow, so we could "pock" eggs.  This photo is of my grandmother, who died 20 years ago.  She is on the porch at my parents' house with both hands full of colored eggs, apparently going to pock with someone.  That smile is the reason I still dye eggs.  I think of her every time I dye eggs.  The tradition of dyeing and knocking eggs runs deep in both mine and Richard's families. 

1 comment:

Kyra said...

What a lovely photo of your grandmother! Thanks for sharing your Easter egg memories. I used to dye eggs with my sister, which was fun.