The art of making red eggs


Not long ago, a red egg spurred me to write an article in The Star. It earned me a few hundred bucks, not bad eh?

I hate red eggs because it is a nuisance to make them but for the sake of keeping traditions, I will do it on my kids’ birthdays. The above beautiful red eggs are still warm as I am blogging this.

It takes a certain skill to make red eggs. Here are some tips:
1. Put eggs into a big pot of COLD tap water
2. Put pot on the LOWEST fire (this will ensure that eggs do not crack)
3. Drop a few drops of vinegar into the pot
4. Put a teaspoon of salt in the water
5. The salt and vinegar will remove the waxy coating on the eggs shell and make it porous, in order to absorb the red dye.
6. Take a tablespoon of food dye and put in a small, ugly bowl (you do not want to stain a good bowl, right?)
7. Leave the egg to simmer for a good 30-45 minutes.
8. Remove pot from fire, pour hot water away.
9. Scoop one egg and drop into the little bowl of food dye, twirl around with a spoon (you don’t want all your fingers and thumb to turn red, right?)
10. Leave egg to cool. (when the egg is still hot, the dye will dry faster and hence, the colour will not seep through the shell, into the egg white)

To the non-Chinese readers, red eggs symbolise good luck, roundness (as in complete happiness) and a sign of fertility/prosperity. Red eggs are usually given as gifts when a newborn baby reaches one month. Red eggs are also made during birthdays.

The red eggs are meant for my toddler’s birthday today, 2 years old. I have blogged about it on my personal blog.

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5 thoughts on “The art of making red eggs


    (February 28, 2005 - 1:51 pm)

    “hong gai dan”,”hong gai dan”!


    (March 1, 2005 - 7:48 am)

    Hi auntie lilian – thanks for dropping by 🙂 red eggs red eggs, me and my hsemates were just discussing about hard boiled eggs and realise none of us actually know how long does it take to cook hard boiled eggs (let alone red eggs) – shame on us 😛


    (March 1, 2005 - 11:24 pm)

    Hi Yingci – hahaha, glad to be of help. Something like 30 mins will cook it. On low fire ya? Or else the egg white will ooze out, making the eggs look monstrous.
    Jason – hong kai dan


    (March 2, 2005 - 1:50 am)

    I see…thanks for the tips, this year let me show my MIL the most beautiful red egg on my girls’ birthday. *practise, practise*

    […] These are red eggs I made for my kid’s birthday. Red eggs are very significant in the Chinese culture. We must have red eggs on the baby’s full-moon, i.e one month after the baby is born. You can read ‘The art of making red eggs’ here on my food blog. […]

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