There are many food additives found in ingredients and food coloring is in this list. Some artificial colourings are said to cause negative effects on children while others may trigger asthma. Making use of natural food coloring would be a positive step towards improving these situations. Making natural food coloring can be relatively easy and it will be free from toxins and chemicals. For making natural red coloring use a pound of beets which have been scrubbed free of dirt, put these in a pot and add enough water to cook them. Put a lid on the pot and boil them until they are tender. Once cooked, remove the beets, chop them, then return to the cooking water. Allow to stand for several hours then strain the water into a container, if a stronger color is desired the beets can be mashed to concentrate the color. The coloring can have two teaspoons of vinegar added before pouring it into a jar. Raspberries, pomegranates or cherries can be used in their natural form as a red coloring as well.
The natural food coloring green is made by using avocado or spinach. Wash the avocado or spinach well and puree until smooth. Take four cup of water and add to a medium pan, add to this half a cup of the avocado or spinach puree and bring it to the boil, then simmer it for several hours. Strain the liquid into a bowl and allow it to cool. One quarter teaspoon of baking powder can be added if a deeper color is preferred. Keep refrigerated until needed. If using spinach this may give a slight flavour, kale which has a milder flavour can be used instead. Blueberries or blackcurrants can also be used, just boil, mash and then strain the blue colored liquid into a jar and refrigerate.
The final natural food coloring is yellow and made from stale turmeric powder. The powder loses its flavour when it goes stale but still retains the color. Yellow coloring can also be made from boiling chopped carrot, orange or lemon peels. The same process for making the color is followed for the red, green and blue colors. Understanding the use of natural colors is important, so that what they are used on is not spoiled. Because some of the natural colors have a slight flavour this may affect the taste of the food, so do some taste testing and decide on what flavour should suit what food. The flavour should be only slight, but more color will need to be used than the commercial variety. Because more color has to be added, the amount of liquid in a dish of food may need to be reduced. Start with small amounts then add till you have the right color. Only keep the coloring for up to two weeks then discard what hasn’t been used in this time. By experimenting, a number of colors can be made and the right amount used in the food.