This Marbled Tea Egg recipe serves up eggs with a beautiful marbled surface. They are simmered in a savory liquid with star anise, cinnamon sticks, Sichuan peppercorns, and black tea until soaked with the flavors of the spices and a refreshing tea fragrance. They look beautiful and taste divine!
Why this Chinese Marbled Tea Recipe Works:
- The steeping liquid actually infuses the egg whites, giving it a subtle sweet and salty flavor.
- The longer steeping not only allows for a stronger flavor, but also for a darker design.
- When you crack your eggs delicately, but confidently, you obtain a beautiful, intricate design.
- Soy sauce
- Star anise
- Black tea
- Cinnamon stick
- Sichuan peppercorn (optional)
- Mandarin orange peel (optional)
How To Make This Marbled Tea Egg Recipe – Step By Step
- Gently place the eggs in a medium pot and fill with water to cover the eggs by 1-inch. Bring the pot to a boil, lower the heat and let simmer for 3 minutes.
- Remove the eggs (leaving the water in the pot) and let cool under running cool water. Using the back of the teaspoon, gently tap the eggshell to crack the shell all over.
- 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.
- Simmer for 40 minutes, cover with lid and let eggs steep for a few hours to overnight. The longer you steep, the more flavorful and deeply marbled the tea eggs will be.
Marbled Tea Eggs
Isn’t the shell of the Tea Egg absolutely gorgeous? The best part (other than eating) is to peel back the egg shell to see what kind of marbled design you end up with!
We generally eat these at room temperature or just slightly warm. In Northern China, Chinese Tea Eggs symbolize golden nuggets for the Chinese New Year feast – so if you’re lookin’ for a little more prosperity this coming year – my Mama says you’d better make this recipe!
My friend Diana, author of Appetite For China recently was vacationing here in Tampa, Florida and I got to meet her! (yeah – we got a pic together too! at the end of the post.) She includes dried orange peel in her recipe and I’m sure she’ll be enjoying Chinese Tea Eggs with her parents in China.
Creating A Marbled Effect
For Chinese Marbled Tea Eggs, you’ll want to hard boil eggs first, and after they cool off, use a back of a teaspoon to gently crack the eggshell all over. Keep the eggshell intact, but the more you crack, the more intricate the design of the marble will be. Make those crack pretty deep, as that is how the tea/soy mixture will seep into the egg.
What To Serve With This Tea Egg Recipe
You can batch-cook tea eggs and store them for later. They make a perfect breakfast, noodle topping, and between-meal snack!
Top Tips For This Marbled Tea Egg Recipe
- I was gentle at first, but after seeing that the eggshell stayed intact, I cracked the next egg a bit harder…and what a difference that made!
- I use a quart bag to marinate the eggs so I can use a minimal amount of marianting liquid to soak the eggs. If you plan to use a container instead of a quart bag, you should double the amount of marinade so you have enough to cover all the eggs.
- The tea egg marinating liquid, if stored properly, can be used more than once. If you plan to do so, make sure to use a clean spoon to remove the eggs from the liquid. And you should boil the liquid and let it cool again the next time you use it.
Check Out These Other Delicious Egg Dishes
- Chinese Egg Drop Soup
- Bacon, Egg and Toast Cups
- Green Eggs and Ham Sushi
- Asparagus with Fried Egg and Parmesan Cheese
Have you tried this Marbled Tea Egg recipe? Feel free to leave a star rating and I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!
Chinese Marbled Tea Egg Recipe
- 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
- Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil, enough to cover the eggs by an inch..
- Remove eggs from the fridge to bring down in temperature a bit while the water comes to a boil.
- Once the water is boiling, gently and slowly lower the eggs into the water. Set a timer for 10 minutes for a medium-hard boil.
- Remove the eggs (leaving the water in the pot) and let cool under running water.
- Using the back of a teaspoon, gently tap the eggshell to crack the shell all over. The more you tap, the more intricate the design. Do this with a delicate hand to keep the shell intact.
- To the same pot with the boiling water, return the eggs and add the remaining ingredients.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately turn the heat to low.
- Simmer for 40 minutes, cover with lid, and let eggs steep for a few hours to overnight.
- The longer you steep, the more flavorful and deeply marbled the tea eggs will be.
- I like to steep for 5 hours, but my mom prefers overnight!
And as I promised, here is the lovely Diana!
Chinese New Year book for kids
If you want to teach your kids about Chinese New Year, this book called Dragon Dance is great !
More Recipes to Explore:
Chinese New Year Recipes: What to eat if you want a raise! (Steamy Kitchen)
What to eat for Chinese New Year Infographic (Steamy Kitchen)
Chinese New Year Recipes + Superstitions (Steamy Kitchen)
Chinese Egg Drop Soup (Steamy Kitchen)
Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs (All Recipes)