My word for the year is Stewardship. One place where that word is really coming alive is in our kitchen. The 40 Days of Soups experiment we just completed grew out of my desire to become a better steward of my family’s nutrition. It’s working! It’s working! And maybe one day soon I’ll find some margin to write about that … working on becoming a better steward of how I use my time, too. But first, let me wrap up my Easter post from last week.
During Lent, I spotted a few recipes for natural Easter egg dyes floating about Facebook — a good extension of my stewardship goals. I thought, Why heck, let’s try it! And so we did. With just a few pantry items, we concocted some beautiful dyes resulting in softly shaded eggs. Bonus: the house smelled delicious with all these flavors simmering on the stove top throughout the day.
Stewardship Tip: Every part of the egg can be used, even the shells that contain much-needed natural nutrients. Grind them up and scatter about an inch deep into the soil around your houseplants and gardens.
Here’s a run-down of the ingredients we used and the colors produced. We allowed the eggs to soak in the refrigerator overnight to produce a deeper color.
Peel the skin from 6 red onions and simmer peels in 2 cups of water for 15 minutes. Strain from water and add 3 teaspoons of white vinegar. (Still eating the onions!)
Peel the skin from 6 yellow apples. Simmer peels in 1-1/2 cups water for 20 minutes. Strain from water and add 2 teaspoons white vinegar. (Saved the apples for fondue!)
Simmer 4 ounces chopped fennel tops in 1-1/2 cups of water for 20 minutes. Strain from water and add 2 teaspoons white vinegar. (Trying to figure out what to do with fennel bulbs before they spoil. Help!)
Peel the skin of 6 yellow onions and simmer in 2 cups water for 15 minutes. Strain and add 3 teaspoons white vinegar. (More onions!)
Stir 2 tablespoons paprika into 1 cup boiling water. Then add 2 teaspoons white vinegar.
Simmer the peels of 6 oranges in 1-1/2 cups water for 20 minutes. Strain from water and add 2 teaspoons vinegar. (Saved the oranges for fondue!)
Mix 1 cup beet juice and 1 tablespoon of vinegar.
Mix 1 cup grape juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar.
** We weren’t able to produce a pink-red color like I had hoped, so if you have one that works well, I’m all ears. And because stewardship is the name of the game here, we just couldn’t let those apples and oranges go to waste. We topped off our egg-dyeing experiment with a nice pot of chocolate fondue. This just might become a Holy Saturday/Easter Vigil tradition!