One of my favorite dishes when I head back home; it combines hard-boiled eggs with the subtle flavor of anise and the deep brown hues of black tea and soy. The cracked patterns from the broken shells make these quite attractive! I eat these sliced in quarters and chilled as a side dish, appetizer, or snack. Recipe courtesy of Mom.

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Ingredients

8
Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • In a large saucepan, combine eggs and 1 teaspoon salt; cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and cool. When cool, tap eggs with the back of a spoon to crack shells (do not remove shells).

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  • In a large saucepan, combine 3 cups water, soy sauce, black soy sauce, salt, tea leaves, star anise, cinnamon stick, and tangerine zest. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 3 hours. Remove from heat, add eggs, and let steep for at least 8 hours.

Notes

Eggs can steep up to 1 1/2 days for richer flavor. Store eggs unpeeled and tightly sealed in refrigerator. They will keep 4 to 5 days.

Nutrition Facts

75.9 calories; protein 6.6g 13% DV; carbohydrates 1.2g; fat 5g 8% DV; cholesterol 186mg 62% DV; sodium 659.1mg 26% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (31)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
04/13/2007
Please note that the Chinese "dark/black" soy sauce is VERY different than the "light/regular" one. The dark soy has a sweeter flavor, while giving the color to the egg. It's not salty at all. So the "regular" soy sauce is actually the wrong one to use. Read More
(130)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
01/25/2004
I fudged a bit and only used water, soy, Wort. sauce and tea leaves. Make sure the cracks in the eggs break the thin membrane between the shell and the egg otherwise you won't get the marbling. Read More
(72)
35 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 18
  • 4 star values: 9
  • 3 star values: 4
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 5 stars
04/13/2007
Please note that the Chinese "dark/black" soy sauce is VERY different than the "light/regular" one. The dark soy has a sweeter flavor, while giving the color to the egg. It's not salty at all. So the "regular" soy sauce is actually the wrong one to use. Read More
(130)
Rating: 3 stars
01/25/2004
I fudged a bit and only used water, soy, Wort. sauce and tea leaves. Make sure the cracks in the eggs break the thin membrane between the shell and the egg otherwise you won't get the marbling. Read More
(72)
Rating: 5 stars
01/25/2004
This is one of those suprising recipes. You read it and think it just can't taste good, but it turns out remarkably well. I ommitted the black soy sauce since I don't know the difference. I let the eggs soak at least overnight in the refrigerator. I peel, slice lengthwise and place yolk side down on my most elegant glass platter. The appearance is of delicate marble eggs. Even kids love the taste. I call them 1000 year old eggs after the traditional Chinese dish...not the same at all, but they look antique! Read More
(61)
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Rating: 4 stars
01/25/2004
I love Chinese tea leaf eggs. Always takes longer to make than you'd think though. This version is okay but search around for other versions on the internet for other spices to put in. Read More
(25)
Rating: 5 stars
01/22/2009
I totally forgot to buy the anise pods so I had to use anise extract that I had on hand. They still turned out WONDERFUL and I can't wait to make more. I can't stress using the black soy sauce over the regular enough. They are totally different flavors and if you just use double the regular soy sauce the eggs will probably end up being overly salty. Read More
(24)
Rating: 5 stars
02/23/2009
I love tea eggs! What I usually do is that I just throw the eggs in with the sauce in the initial boil and simmer for a few hours and just let it marinate in the fridge in a container until I want to eat one. I also save the marinade for the next batch of tea eggs I want to make. I also found that adding a small amount of sugar makes it taste better. And in general to prevent the egg from cracking in the beginning it is best to let the eggs come to room temperature. Read More
(21)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/09/2005
How can you argue with success? I took them to a large group potluck today and when I brought them in the hostess carried them around to show every guest even before placing them on the table. Almost everyone who saw them came to me and asked how I did it--including several of the children! I personally thought they needed a tad of salt. Read More
(21)
Rating: 4 stars
02/25/2007
I LOVE THIS RECIPE. I AGREE THAT YOU HAVE TO BREAK THE MEMBRANE TO GET THE MARBLED EFFECT. I CAN'T FIND BLACK SOY SAUCE BUT USED ALL REGULAR SOY SAUCE. I'LL TRY OMITTING THE SALT I THOUGHT THEY ARE A BIT SALTY. I'M GOING TO TRY USING EARL GREY TEA NEXT TIME SINCE IT'S MY FAVORITE TEA. I THINK THIS MIGHT GIVE THE EGGS AN INTERESTING FLAVOR. I'LL LET YOU KNOW HOW THEY TURN OUT. Read More
(18)
Rating: 5 stars
09/12/2008
I have read a lot about these not being good and about it being to salty. Soy sauce is just like making cheese; curds and whey. The whey is the soy sauce and the curds get turned into miso. This is not exact but close enough. The point being that like cheese or wine there are a LOT of soy sauces out there. Find a good one or get some miso and add water if you can't find the type you like to make better soy sauces. Read More
(17)