Dying Eggs in the Russian Tradition
April 10, 2010
Last Sunday was Easter for all of you, no doubt. But here in Moscow, it was Пасха (Pass-cha). I passed on the opportunity to go to church, but I couldn’t turn my host mom down when she asked if I wanted to dye eggs. I wasn’t sure what I was getting into, but it’s an opportunity I’m glad I didn’t miss.
Instead of dying eggs with cheap store-bought chemicals, Russians start with a huge batch of hard-boiled brown eggs and a pot of onion skins. First, we wrapped the eggs in old pairs of pantyhose with cilantro leaves and rice. Once the stuff was firmly against the sides of the eggs, we let them soak in the pot of onion skins and water until the acidity of the onion skins burned an imprint onto the eggs.
It should be noted that the wrapping of these eggs is a very difficult process. You can’t really tell what your finished egg is going to look like, and the process of wrapping can be extremely tedious. However, mom, Anya wanted me to let you know that I am quite skilled at this wrapping procedure!
It was quite an experience coloring eggs this way, and I think you can really appreciate the finished product more than when it’s simply dipped in dye. It was also a good chance for me to get to have some quality bonding time with my wonderful host family. I have a lot more updates on the way, so stay tuned!