Saturday, April 26, 2014

Pickled Red Beet Eggs

I remember as a kid being very sad one Easter Sunday.  It was because, when I peeled one of the eggs I worked so hard to paint and dye and sticker-ize and bedazzle—all that work—the inside looked just like a plain, un-dyed egg!  (I hope my Mom told me that beauty is only skin deep.)  But later on in the day, I was delighted when my Mom took the big container of Pickled Red Beet Eggs out of the refrigerator! When you cut into one of these purple beauties – surprise! – the color went all the way through to the yolk!
This recipe is a great way to use up those hardboiled eggs.  I’ve found my kids like dyeing them way more than they like eating them, so I am usually guaranteed half a dozen eggs to use in this dish.  This is an old Pennsylvania Dutch recipe that came from my Mom and her mother, in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.  You can adjust the ratio of vinegar to sugar, but I like how these are sweet-tart and firm.  Some people add very thinly sliced onions to the beet brine, and others add whole cloves.  I like them with just these 4 ingredients.
You’ll want to let these soak for at least 2 days.  I wouldn’t let them sit more than a week, but I really doubt they’ll last that long!  Make sure the eggs and beets are in a deep and narrow container so everything is submerged – if you go shallow and wide, your eggs won’t color evenly and you’ll have to rotate them at least 2 times a day.  So raid the kids’ Easter baskets and start pickling!

Pickled Red Beet Eggs
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cans sliced beets (not pickled beets)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vinegar (you can use white or apple cider)
  1. In a sauce pan, place eggs in one layer.  Fill pan, covering the eggs with an inch of water.  Cook on high until a boil is just reached, then immediately remove from heat and cover with a lid.  Set a timer for 13 minutes.  When the time is up, drain the eggs and fill the pan with ice and water.  Let cool.
  2. Peel the cooled eggs and put them in a deep container with a lid.  Dump the two cans of beets and their juice into the container, followed by the sugar and vinegar.  Swirl around to dissolve.  Store in the refrigerator for at least 2 days, making sure the eggs are submerged (or turning them if they are not.)  Cut eggs in half and serve with beets.

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