Miniature Works of Art You Can Eat
The Chinese restaurant in Brooklyn, 100% Mr. Lin, had a menu item I was not familiar with - Tea Eggs - so of course, I had to try it. They were great!
I wanted to recreate these at home so I started digging for recipes. One recipe included soy sauce, black soy sauce, black tea leaves, star anise, cinnamon stick and tangerine zest. Another called for ginger, bay leaves, tea, Sichuan peppercorns, sugar, and Shaoxing wine, and yet another required mandarin peels and Chinese Five Spice (which actually contains some of the other ingredients listed in the other recipes). I picked one and got to work.
When I was reading the recipe, the trick to getting these beautifully marbled eggs was revealed. After hard-boiling them, the shells are cracked just a tiny bit before the eggs are soaked in the spiced tea mixture. This lets the tea creep into the egg to create a marbling effect. Pretty cool! These may not be for everyone but I suggest you give them a try. At the very least, you can learn how to make some really beautiful hard-boiled eggs!