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CHINESE TEA LEAF EGGS 茶葉蛋

茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs are delicious, fragrant and ridiculously effortless to make! Make these perfect creamy unctuous texture soft-boiled marbled eggs in just 10 minutes – gluten-free adaptable!

茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs

I love eggs. I could eat them for breakfast, lunch or dinner. A fried egg over Chinese take out would make a wonderful late night snack too! It would be like Christmas whenever my parent’s cooked some eggs. The funny thing is my 3 year old daughter, would not come near the kitchen if eggs were on the menu! SMH!

Tea Leaf Eggs 茶葉蛋 is a traditional Chinese appetizer and often paired with a bowl of rice or served on its own.

The tea eggs have a beautiful marbled surface and are rich in umami flavours after being bathing in a savoury marinade consisting of light and dark soy sauce, star anisecinnamonSichuan peppercorns, shaoxing wine and of course black tea leaves.

茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs

HOW TO MAKE THE BEST TEA LEAF EGGS

The question often asked is ‘should I make my tea eggs with hard or soft boiled eggs?’ I often find that store bought tea leaf eggs are overcooked and has a rubbery texture, and maybe even a chalky green rim around the yolk.

If the Japanese ajitama ramen egg and the Chinese tea leaf egg had a baby, that would be the perfect marbled tea leaf egg! It would be half-way runny and thickened with a longer marinade of two to three days.

Cooking the eggs to a soft boiled egg doneness is pretty ingenious (unless you are making these Chinese Deviled Eggs with Pork Floss and Nori!)

The Momofuku Soy Sauce eggs ask that you carefully put the eggs into the boilding water and cook for exactly 6 minutes and 50 seconds, stirring slowly for the first 1 1/2 minutes to distribute the heat evenly; then followed by a quick ice bath.

I personally prefer the 63-degree egg method! It is fail safe and a perfect creamy unctuous texture oozes out when my knife pierces the egg. Every time!

  1. Simply cook your eggs in a sous vide machine (like this one).
  2. Bring the water to a constant 63 degrees Celsius (145.4 degrees Fahrenheit)
  3. Submerge your eggs in a sous-vide safe plastic bag and let the eggs hang out there for an hour.

HOW TO PROPERLY CRACK THE EGGS

Once the eggs are cooled, lightly crack the egg shells by tapping it with the back of a spoon. Be careful and don’t fully break the shell. You simply want the egg shells slightly cracked to let the marinade seep through to infuse and marble the eggs.

THE MARINADE

While the egg in its water bath, I would prepare the marinade with a few pantry staples – black tea bags or loose leaf tea, light and dark soy sauce, star anisecinnamonSichuan peppercorns, shaoxing wine, bay leaves, sugar, salt and water. Adding a few slices of ginger would also add a nice punch.

Swap out soy sauce for tamari; and sugar for maple syrup for a gluten-free alternative.

Add all the ingredients to a medium pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes and remove from heat. Let cool completely, discard the tea bags and set aside.

Once the eggs are ready, gently submerge the eggs into the marinade. Avoid dropping them in. They may break if you drop them into the pot. I like to transfer everything to a covered container and refrigerate two to three days. The egg yolk will start to thicken and turn a beautiful light brownish yellow colour.

WHAT TO DO WITH THE LEFTOVER MARINADE

If stored properly, you can use the marinade more then once. If you plan on reusing the liquid, remember to boil the liquid again and let cool. Always use a clean spoon.

茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs

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茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs

CHINESE TEA LEAF EGGS 茶葉蛋

  • Author: Nancy
  • Prep Time: 2
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 12 minutes
  • Yield: 8 eggs 1x
  • Category: appetizer, snack
  • Method: boil
  • Cuisine: Chinese

Description

茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs are delicious, fragrant and ridiculously effortless to make! Make these perfect creamy unctuous texture soft-boiled marbled eggs in just 10 minutes –  gluten-free adaptable!

 


Scale

Ingredients


Instructions

Bring the eggs to room temperature by leaving them out of the refrigerator for 20 mins.

 

Preparing the Marinade

  1. In a small pot, add all the ingredients except the eggs. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to low-medium heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  2. Once done, remove and discard the tea bags. 
  3. Set aside and let cool completely.

 

Cooking the Eggs (Stovetop Method)

  1. Boil a large pot of water. 
  2. Carefully place the eggs into the boiling water and cook for exactly 6 minutes and 50 seconds. Stirring slowly to distribute heat evenly for the first minute.
  3. While the eggs are cooking, fill a large bowl with ice and cold water.
  4. Transfer the eggs to the ice bath to cool.

 

Cooking the Eggs (Sous Vide Method)

 

  1. Cook your eggs in a sous vide machine (like this one).
  2. Bring the water to a constant 63 degrees Celsius (145.4 degrees Fahrenheit)
  3. Submerge your eggs in a sous-vide safe plastic bag and let the eggs hang out there for an hour.

 

 

Marinating the Eggs

 

  1. Once the eggs are cool, gently crack the eggs by tapping the shell with the back of a spoon. The eggs are still very soft, if you crack it too hard, you may break the eggs.
  2. Make sure the eggs shells are cracked enough so the marinade can seep into inside and marble the eggs. You can also opt to peel the eggs and marinate the eggs without any shells.
  3. Place the cracked eggs into a container, then pour the marinade in until the eggs are completely submerged.
  4. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator. Marinate longer for two to three days if you prefer a thicker egg yolk. The eggs will become more flavourful and saltier over time. 


Keywords: CHINESE TEA LEAF EGGS, 茶葉蛋, chinese recipes, egg recipes, soft boiled eggs, hard boiled eggs, 63 degree eggs, sous vide eggs

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茶葉蛋 Chinese Tea Leaf Eggs

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