Chinese Tea eggs

Hi everyone!

I used to eat these eggs all the time when I was young. They were everywhere in China! Food vendors on every street would have a pot of tea eggs simmering away. Each egg used to something like 10 cents…and I would ride on the back of my mom’s little scooter and munch away at these. I absolutely loved them and have always wanted to know how to make them. The tea flavor give a plain hard boiled egg a delicious edge, and it’s super easy to make!

I found this recipe on Steamy Kitchen written by Jaden Hair, who in turn got it from Appetite for China, a fabulous blog written by Diana Kuan. After reading her blog, I was inspired to make more Asian foods around the house… I hope you give these eggs a try, they are so yummy and I am sure you will love them!

Here is what you will need:

6 eggs
3/4 cup soy sauce
2 star anise
2 tablespoons black tea (or 2 tea bags)
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorn (optional)
2 strips dried tangerine or mandarin orange peel (optional)

  1. Place the eggs in a medium pot and fill with water to cover the eggs by 1-inch or so.
  2. Bring the pot to a boil, lower the heat and let simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  3. Remove the eggs (leaving the water in the pot) and cool the eggs in a ice bath or under running cool water.
  4. Use the back of a teaspoon, gently tap the eggshell to crack the shell all over. The more you tap, the more intricate the design.
  5. To the same pot with the boiling water, return the eggs and add in the remaining ingredients. Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately turn the heat to low.
  6. Simmer for 40 minutes, cover with lid and let eggs steep for a few hours to overnight.
  7. The longer you steep, the more flavorful the tea eggs will be. I was impatient and steeped it only for 3 hours, most people steep for 5+ hours, even overnight.
  8. When you peel the egg shell away, there will be this beautiful marbling on the egg and on the shells. SO COOL!

A picture of the marbled eggshell

Recipe adapted from Jaden Hair and Diana Kuan

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