Published January 19, 2022
4 Ingredients I 15 Minutes plus cooling and soaking
Make this mouth-watering Chinese street food at home! Seasoned in spiced-tea, these eggs have a rich flavor, a lovely aroma, and a beautiful marble pattern.
The combination of black tea, cumin seed, cinnamon, bay leaf, star anise and clover, along with soy sauce, give the tea / brine an resistible aroma and a rich savory flavor.
Use a piece of muslin or cheese cloth to wrap up the tea and all the spices. If all you’ve got is a tea strainer, just put the black tea, cumin seeds and clovers into it. The larger pieces of spices can be easily fished out of the tea / brine when you are done with cooking.
Gently crack the eggs at the blunt end (the air chamber end) can help prevent eggs from breaking (exploding) during the rapid boiling. Make sure you make only fine cracks appearing at the end without actually breaking the eggs.
It would be really easy just putting the eggs and the seasoning into a pot of water, and boil them until the eggs are flavored. But you prefer tender egg yolks like I do, then the egg-boiling needs to be done quickly, and the flavoring is done by soaking the eggs in cooled tea. This is why this recipe involves a couple of cooling time, but I think it’s well worth it for the flavor and the texture! Of course, you can always speed up the cooling by placing the pot into a tub of icy cold water!
MARBLED TEA EGGS
PREP: 15 min plus cooling COOKING: 1 min Soaking: 4 hours to overnight
- A dozen of fresh eggs
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp loose leaf black tea
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 bay leaves
- 3 star anise
- 4 clovers
- 1 tsp raw sugar
- salt to taste
- Wrap the black tea, cumin seeds, bay leaves, star anise, cinnamon stick and clovers in a piece of muslin and secure with a piece of thread.
- Add all the ingredients, except the eggs, and 5 cups of water into a wok or a medium pot, boil for 10 minutes. Let it cool to touch. Place the pot in a tub of icy water to help speed up the cooking.
- Gently make a few fine cracks at the blunt end of the eggs, then add them into the pot. Add cold water if needed so there is about 1″ of water above the eggs. On high heat, bring the liquid to quick boil. Cover the pot and remove it from heat. Leave the pot covered for 6 minutes, then take the eggs out of the spiced tea and cool in cold water. Meanwhile, leave the tea to cool to touch again.
- Put the eggs back to the pot of tea. Use a large spoon to gently make fine cracks on the egg shell so the tea can sip through the cracks to flavor the eggs and form the marble pattern. Soak at least 4 hours and ideally overnight. Add extra salt to the tea if you prefer heavier flavored eggs.