I boiled up a flat of 30 eggs for my kids to dye for Easter this Sunday. Fresh eggs from the coop take a lot more prep work than those store bought eggs. You have to wash and scrub all the eggs before boiling. Then once the eggs are cooked and cooled you have to scrub them once again to get the remainder of the “bloom” off of them. Otherwise the dye will come out a mess on the egg. So yes, I put a lot of elbow grease into making the eggs ready for the kids to dye this Saturday.
I will tell you – this is a live and learn process for me. I have been raising chickens now for 5 years and it never dawned on me why the eggs always dyed funny, and with funky streaks. I always chocked it up to not being store bought. Well, yeah that was part of it.
Mainly it is because of the “bloom” on the eggs. You know, that protective cuticle layer on the outside of the egg. The bloom coating seals the shell pores, prevents bacteria from getting inside the shell, and reduces moisture loss from the egg – all designed to make the egg last longer, but in our case not dye very well.
Store eggs, be it white or brown — are normally scrubbed down with cleaning solutions to rid the egg of the bloom before they hit the store shelves. So as the consumer you don’t even have to worry about that process at all.
As for me — there isn’t a middle man and I have to do all the work myself — IF — I want to dye eggs for easter, LOL. Otherwise, if you just want a hard boiled egg — then it doesn’t matter if there is a bloom on the egg. Just clean, boil, peel and eat. However, since we are dying the eggs, there is a process.
First off the bat I scrub the eggs down with soap and hot water to get rid of any feces or bacteria that may be on the eggs… and maybe some of the bloom will come off as well.
Next I fill a stock pot about 2/3 full of water. I let it come to a boil. Next I add a cup of white vinegar and add each egg to the boiling water. Let boil for 20 minutes.
Once the 20 minutes is up, remove pot from stove and carefully drain boiling water and replace with cold water and ice cubes. This will stop the eggs from cooking.
When you can handle the eggs, take each egg and scrub the bloom off of them. Place back in egg carton and place the carton into the refrigerator. Eggs should be completely dry before you can dye them otherwise the dying solution will not stick. Nevertheless, you are now ready to dye your eggs!