茶葉蛋 Tea Eggs

05 Apr

Tea egg is a popular Chinese snack that can be eaten any time of the day.  By steeping into the spice-tea liquid, the eggs absorb their flavors and color.  The longer you steep the egg, the more flavor it has.  By cracking egg shells, the dark color of the liquid goes to the eggs and bring a marbling effect to them.


  • 1 dozen eggs
  • 2 tablespoons black tea leaves (ex. Pu-erh Tea)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons Sichuan pepper 花椒
  • 4 Chinese star anise 八角
  • 3 dried tangerine peel 陳皮
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder or cinnamon stick
  • 2 tablespoon cooking wine
  • Dash of cumin


  1. Place eggs In a large pot, cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 8 minutes.  Remove from heat, drain and soak in cold water for couple minutes.  When cool, tap eggs with the back of a spoon to crack shells, but do not remove shells.
  2. In a large pot, combine tea leaves, salt, sugar, Sichuan pepper, star anise, tangerine peel, cinnamon powder, cooking wine and cumin with water and egg. (About 4-5 cups of water, enough to cover all the eggs).  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour.  Remove from heat and let them steep overnight or longer.

*Tips: Before combining the tea leaves with the spices liquid, soak them in warm water for 15 minutes, drain and remove.  This can remove the bitter taste.

Source: The Zhou’s family with modification


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