Tea Egg: First Try

I had my first Tea Egg in Beijing. It’s a tantalizingly simple idea:
1) Make some hard-boiled eggs.
2) Reduce the water to a simmer.
3) Add a teabag and some spices.
4) Crack the shells of the eggs by tapping around them with a knife handle.
5) Return eggs to the water and simmer for 2-5 hours.
The flavors permeate the white of the egg and also create a neat spiderweb effect.
When done right, like the ones I had in China, the taste will inspire you to try making some when you get back home. Even when done wrong like this, it’s damned tasty.
I did these “wrong” in the sense that I didn’t follow a fixed recipe. These were “practice” eggs that were near their use-by eggs. One bag of black tea and a tablespoon each of cinnamon and Worcestershire made a nice, barbecue-ey sort of taste but it wasn’t quite strong enough.
Also, to duplicate the best I had in Beijing, I think the eggs would have to go in unshelled…so the flavors seep in everywhere at full potency.
Still, a solid first effort. And I think if you served this to a 9- year-old boy as a “dinosaur egg” it’d go over pretty big.

Posted via email from ihnatko’s posterous

6 thoughts on “Tea Egg: First Try

  1. Adam Ek

    Soy sauce eggs also work nice for this kind of thing. Hard boil eggs, crack them, roll them around in a sauce pan with some heated soy sauce. Nice flavored hard boiled eggs that you do NOT need to add any salt to.

  2. Ihnatko Post author

    I used black tea, cinnamon, and worcestershire sauce. Traditional recipes use a combo of spices but almost always “Chinese Five-Spice Powder.”

    But it’s an interesting basic idea; the egg is infused with the flavors of the spices in the water. So conceivably, you could make up your own combinations.

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  4. Mike

    Greetings from the Goddard Space Flight Center, whose spoon that egg is sitting in – I was not aware that such a thing existed – tea egg or GSFC spoon!

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