After Christ's ascension, Mary Magdalen became one of His greatest missionary disciples. This is why, in the Eastern Church, we refer to her as "Equal to the Apostles". Once, she was having dinner with the Emperor Tiberias in Rome and she decided to bring some eggs to him as a gift, intending to use them as a symbol to witness to him about Christ's resurrection. Tiberias would not understand her metaphor, stating that Jesus was dead, just like the eggs. At that moment, to everyone's amazement, the eggs on the table turned a brilliant red, catching the attention of a very confused and bewildered Tiberias. I bet he listened to her after that.
Here is a recipe to make some brilliant red eggs for us to enjoy as we remember what a great witness Mary Magdalen had become for Christ.
St. Mary Magdalen's Red Pickled Eggs
1 dozen eggs, hard boiled and peeled
1 cup juice of some fresh red beets, or from 2 (15 ounce) cans sliced beets
1 cup white or cider vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1-2 cinnamon sticks, 1 star anise, 5 allspice berries (all optional)
Pack the hard boiled eggs (and the beets if you like) into a large glass jar. Meanwhile, in a pot on the stove, bring the vinegar and water to a boil, add the beet juice, sugar and spices and allow to boil for minute or two before turning off the heat. Pour the hot brine over the eggs and place the lids on the jars and allow to cool to room temperature. You can keep the jars in the refrigerator for up to one month if you need to, but the eggs will be pickled through and ready to eat in only a few days.
Mary Magdalene was thought to be the woman who anointed Jesus feet with aromatic ointment and dried them with her hair. In the hot, arid climate where Jesus lived, having clean feet was a necessary comfort. In the hot July weather, many love to go about barefoot for much of the day and would love a gift to help them keep those feet clean and soft. This aromatic foot scrub will remind you of the spices that Mary brought to anoint Our Lord, and will and keep your feet clean and moisturized. We just love it at our house, and a jar will disappear fast when everyone uses it. Make one up for yourself and one to gift to a neighbor in honor of the gift St. Mary Magdalen had given to Jesus.
Magdalene's Aromatic Foot Scrub
In a bowl, combine 1 cup of white sugar, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground cloves, 1/2 tsp ground ginger and a drop of orange or frankincense essential oil, if desired. When this is well combined, add just enough olive oil ( about 1 cup) to make it into a thick paste. Put your scrub into 2 clean glass jars, label them and add a decorative ribbon.