Easter isn't until April 8th but that means you have a month to prepare and have some fun. A family friend took the time to come over to our house and teach me how to make these molded sugar Easter eggs several years ago and they turned out so cute I can't help but share the idea with you.
Wilton makes egg molds for an exorbitant price but I found my little plastic molds for under two dollars at our local Party and Craft store. It's only a plastic egg that fits together, suitable for filling with candy, but works as well as a Wilton mold.
I've made them as household decorations, as party favors and as presents. They're fun for kids to make and since they are so easy to put together, having one break isn't the end of the world--it just means you get to make more next year. One batch of sugar mix makes several smaller eggs (I have two sizes of molds).
1. Mix up the following recipe:
3 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 egg white, well beaten
Mix the sugars together then add the beaten egg white until the mixture has the consistency of damp sand. If you wish to have colored eggs, add some food coloring as you mix but make sure it is evenly mixed throughout before going to the next step.
2. Pack the sugar mixture into both halves of the mold pressing firmly to make sure there are no seams or air pocket. Level each with a straight edged knife.
3. Cover each mold with a plate, square of cardboard or other flat surface and quickly invert to unmold each egg. Remove the mold.
4. Immediately cut off the end of each half of egg with a straight, sharp knife. Be sure to make a clean break. Then carefully push the unmolded halves together, cut ends touching. This allows the rest of the surface to dry out but will keep the inside in tact.
5. Let them dry for three hours, depending on the heat and humidity of the room, then pick them up and gently scoop out the insides with a spoon so that each half forms a oval bowl. Save the scraped sugar for other eggs--covering it tightly until it's used.
6. Let the upturned shell dry for half an hour before decorating.
7. Prepare the royal icing with the following recipe:
8 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
5 egg whites at room temperature
a variety of paste food coloring colors
Combine all the ingredients and beat at a high speed for 7-10 minutes (hand mixers will take longer) but do not over beat. The icing should be quite stiff, the stiffer the better. Add any desired coloring during the last few minutes of the mixing. Paste coloring is preferred as it will not ruin the consistency of the icing.
If the icing is too soft, mix in another 1/3 cup of powdered sugar and continue beating until the desired consistency. Be sure to keep all icing tightly covered as it will dry out and harden quickly.
8. Decorate the bottom half of the Easter egg by making a pool of colored frosting and sticking the decorations into it. These could include tiny toys, dried flowers, stickers cut out but with the backing still stuck on, a picture of your child, a religious symbol or picture or tiny frosting decorations such as found in cake decorating stores. When I made them as party favors for my nieces and nephews I had tiny cut out pictures of temples that I landscaped in the frosting.
9. Once the bottom is decorated, add a ribbon of frosting on the upper edge to act as glue. Stick the two halves together and hold a moment while the frosting hardens. Once dry, decorate the seamed edge with a scalloped pattern of frosting and decorate the edge of the eye hole the same way.
10. Decorate the top of the egg with frosting leaves and flowers, lattice patterns, dried flowers or whatever else you'd like.
If properly stored they can last for several years. Depending on how often they get handled of course.
And speaking of making things from scratch, Stephanie's got a collection of things made from scratch that are worth a peek.
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