While I don’t consider myself religious, I come from a traditionally and culturally rich heritage that has religious holidays and rituals so I like to celebrate them with my family.
This year was the first that I didn’t do the egg preparation with my grandma as she has passed. So this time I was going solo and trying to also show off to my partner of a different background.
This is one of the most entertaining activities though. You can dye all different types of eggs or paint them yourself.
Growing up in a Serbian Orthodox community I was told that Easter eggs were a symbol of Jesus being resurrected and we dyed eggs to symbolise his blood.
To me, it’s always being a part of the traditions of my heritage and spending time with my family while being creative.
The egg has also been a long standing symbol of new life, particularly in pagan spring symbolism.
The oldest example of egg decoration was found by archaeologists to be over 60,000 years ago with the discovery of a decorated ostrich egg.
This was still a time that human artistry boomed and we went from the first humans to the first creative creatures.
Growing up we could draw whatever we wanted and used whatever colours.
Some places in the world keep it more traditional with the images of the cross as well as using the colour red.
In our tradition, we use the eggs to compete for bragging rights to see whose egg is the strongest by cracking them in an egg crack showdown.
How I did it
Here’s the fun part.
First of all, you want to use some really good eggs. Like proper farm eggs that had chickens having the time of their life.
Fun fact, there are so many chickens on earth in this point in our history that aeons from now when they describe our time on earth, the remains of all those chickens will make us seem like they rivalled us in population.
Anyway, you want a good set of eggs because they last longer without smelling and have a great taste afterwards. Quality!
Also, you should try and support your local farms.
You’re going to need the following:
Food dye (I chose blue)
Some garden trimmings and/ or some candle wax.
First, you hard boil the egg.
Put your eggs in cold water that covers them.
Put them on the stove or fire and leave on med-high heat until it comes to a rolling boil.
Turn the heat to med-low and leave for a good 15 minutes on this lower heat for the eggs to boil through.
Once boiled put them in some icy or very cold water to cool them down.
Dying the eggs
While your eggs are cooling, set up some warm water with a tablespoon of vinegar.
I reused the water I boiled the eggs in.
Then try and put a few drops of colouring in. this can be hard if you don’t have a dropper mechanism.
If you are using the garden pieces and stocking, you want to put your pieces on the dab dry egg and pull the stocking over it to hold it in place and tie the stocking off like a balloon.
Obviously, don’t squeeze hard.
If you’re using wax, take a piece of candle wax and draw your won invisible design on the egg.
Once you’ve done your design work, you carefully place your eggs in the mixture.
It doesn’t really matter if they’re touching in the pot just make sure they aren’t crowded.
The dying process can take anywhere from 10-25 minutes depending on how dark you want the colour on your egg.
Once they’re the colour you like, take them out, dry them off and leave to cool and dry.
So my egg was the second strongest.
My sister won by default.
But I clearly won.
The tradition of eggs stems from the pagan traditions from the beginning of humanity.
We use the egg religiously because it symbolises new life and Jesus’ resurrection.
We also do it because it’s a fun bonding activity for the community.
You can include many different designs with garden pieces or drawing on your eggs with wax.
While I didn’t do it this time, you can use natural dyes instead of food colouring, and you can also get some very elaborate eggs happening for Easter.
Stay tuned for next year to see what we come up with.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you and learn some new designs.
Leave a comment or a photo and show of what other techniques are out there.
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