Pysanky (Ukrainian Easter Eggs)
Sort Of...Edible Variation

Many years ago I bought a pysanky decorating kit from one of the Ukrainian tables at the International Institute's “Old World Market”. I did in fact decorate a few eggs using the dyes and materials provided, though my discipline in following a traditional pattern lasted roughly 15 seconds, or maybe till I put down my second or third line.

Edible pysanka made with food-safe dye. 2012

The problem with traditional pysanky (singular pysanka) is that the Ukranians use raw eggs (which they empty) and aniline dyes (which are not food safe) and clean the wax off with toxic solvents (such as lighter fluid.) I was completely unable to drain any eggs, even pricking it with two holes, let alone one, and wasn't thrilled with the idea of using flammable, toxic solvents to remove the wax.

Like so many Americans, my trouble is not a lack of possessions but far too many of them; even my friends who possess knicknacks were not thrilled with the eggs, the no-doubt-rotten-contents having sloshed around in their refrigerators for some odd years. Like the gift decorating I wanted something emphemeral, more like the traditional american easter eggs, which are hard-boiled, dipped in food-safe dyes and consumed.

Thus I hit upon combining the two traditions last year. The eggs from 2000 were colored with much better quality dye; this year's dye, old fashioned tablets from a sesame street kit, had the nasty tendancy of peeling right off the eggs. In any case, the technique makes for a rather pastel-ish product, in contrast to the brilliantly colored traditional Ukranian eggs. However, pastels are associated with Easter anyway, so that isn't a problem for me.

20160324

A fun, emergent quality of eggshells for easter eggs 24mar2016

 
20150913

New index page for pysanky, with instructions

 
20150406

2015 easter eggs, aka pysanky. 06apr2015

 
20130331

2013 pysanky look very much like 2012 pysanky. 31mar2013

 
20120408

In 2004 my technique for edible pysanky hit its apogee. I've been trying to get up to that level ever since. This is...not bad. 08apr2012

 
20090415

Though posted on 14apr2009, these pysanky were made in 2008. 15apr2009

 
20090416

One of the styli needed minor repairs. I tested it , plus a wax removal method, on this organic brown egg. This is the cheat-sheet summary of tutorial info scattered in the rest of the posts. 16apr2009

 
20090414

2009 Pysanky. Looks an awful lot like the 2006 pysanky. Oh, well. Originally posted 13apr09. 14apr2009

 
20060416

Circle pattern pysanky . Originally posted 16apr06 16apr2006

 
20060418

CurliQ pattern pysanky . Originally posted 18apr06 18apr2006

 
20060418

This sub-index page uses the & (2006&pysanky) but otherwise is obsolete, since index-tagging has put all psyanky, 2006 or not, on the main page. 18apr2006

 
20060417

Triangle pattern pysanky . Originally posted 17apr06 17apr2006

 
20120501

My old pysanky index page was created in 2006, with a bit of background of how I began making edible easter eggs. 01may2012

 
20040522

2001 wasn't a very successful year for pysanky. Here're 3 views of the best one. (Max image size: 500pixels wide.) 22may2004

 
20040522

This egg from 2002 evokes to my mind a coral reef. Max image size: 500 pixels. 22may2004

 
20040522

Old index page for 2002. Since I've gotten rid of the tag, this page is obsolete. 22may2004

 
20040522

Orange/red/purple egg 22may2004

 
20040522

How I make my Variation on Traditional Pysanky 22may2004

 
20040522

Basic (text-only) instruction for making a pysanky stylus. Picture of the finished product only, sorry. 22may2004

 
20040522

This link used to be deeply buried, which is why there's no pix. My defense for making pysanky even if you have no religious investment in Easter. 22may2004

 
20000401

Eggs dyed for Easter 2000 01apr2000

 

filed updated 18apr06;and again 12sep15—new summary, image added, index removed.