Greeks have a tradition of exchanging red-dyed eggs at Easter. Years ago, I used to be able to obtain packets of red dye imported from Greece. Although it was somewhat awkward to use (it needed to be dissolved in the boiling water in which the eggs were cooking), it imparted a nice deep scarlet color to the eggs. Since I don't have access to this dye, I tested whether ordinary food dye could be used. Through trial and error, I found that if I used a lot of dye I could get the eggs to become a suitable shade of red.
- One or two dozen eggs
- 5 c. hot water
- 1 cup vinegar
- Two 1 oz. bottles red food dye.
Place eggs in a large saucepan and cover with water. Add salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for fifteen minutes.
Meanwhile, dissolve the dye in 5 c. of hot water plus vinegar. Immediately after the eggs are cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer them to the dye. Leave them in the dye until the eggs are the desired color (about 5 to ten minutes). Dry on a wire rack. Optionally, then wipe with a lightly-oiled rag or paper towel to bring out a shine.