Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Easter has come and gone but here finally are the egg photos. Dyeing the eggs is my favorite part of Easter and the kids love it too. When the kids were little, dyeing the eggs was super messy and like sprinting, ready, set, dye! Within ten minutes the eggs would get dipped in every single color and everything, including their hands, would turn an interesting shade of purpley brown but some of the patinas they achieved were pretty amazing.
As they've grown older we can be more adventuresome, this year we did wax resist and marbled eggs. I've done the marbling a half a dozen times at least and it's always a bit hit or miss, sometimes they turn out beautifully and others, meh. I haven't quite identified what are the perfect conditions, whether it's the temperature of the water or what. The wax resist eggs were awesome though and look kind of abstract expressionist. The biggest challenge with the wax resist eggs was conveying to the kids (and the Huz!) the necessity of the first color being a lighter color and the second color would then overdye the areas of the first color that remained exposed. This was a step by step process. Below the eggs on the pin board with their first coat of wax. This is the first year I've used a pin board and it worked out really well, it's foam core with dress pins pushed through on a one inch grid.
Here's how you do the wax resist eggs:
Heat the beeswax in a pot on low on the stove.
Dip eggs in wax (if you want white areas), dry.
Dip eggs in a light colored dye (I used food coloring and followed the directions on the box), dry.
Dip eggs in wax again covering some of the previous color, dry.
Dip eggs in a darker dye, dry.
Repeat until you're satisfied.
Put eggs on a pan and in the oven on 250 degrees to melt the wax for about 15 minutes.
Wipe off the remaining wax.
One thing to watch for is that the heat of the hot beeswax had a tendency to crack the eggs even though the were hard boiled when they were dipped. We had better success using a brush to apply the beeswax.
I like using finger tools, what can I say, I'm a process gal. The dye faded after a couple of days. The pin board after the dyeing was almost more beautiful than the eggs.
This year I bought an app called Egg Dyeing 101 by Martha Stewart and there are great directions and videos (!) for how to make all kinds of eggs with beautiful examples. I'm not usually much of Martha Stewart lover because her projects always make me feel a bit inadequate somehow, they're so perfect and precious, but this app is worth every penny of it's very affordable 99 cents.
For desert we made a Pavlova or Angel Pie, one giant layer of meringue, a layer of lemon curd, berries, and then whipped cream. I followed this recipe and it all turned out effing delicious. There was a semi-disastrous moment when I realized that the meringue needed to cool in the oven for FOUR hours or more and I didn't have the time, but Meganne, my meringue hotline, talked me through it. I ended up just putting it on a rack (otherwise known as an old guinea pig cage) still on the baking pan and it cooled there. I think it flattened a bit there and maybe it wouldn't have as much in the oven but I don't think anyone noticed one bit.
Knitting has been moving slowly, Ambergris is almost done. The ship that is going to save me from Sleeve Island where I've been marooned is almost in sight.