Which came first? The tea chicken or the tea egg? Tea eggs were introduced to me only 3 years ago at a paddling meet where some teammates had brought them as easy, healthy, snacks between races. I was hooked! They have been on my "To Make" list since then and finally I had a chance to make it. Internet recipes are plenty so no need to follow my instructions. Just enjoy the pictures.
The basic ingredients are water, black tea, 1 star anise, and salt. In this batch above I am getting fancy with the bay leaf, ground black pepper, and even a chili pepper at the end. You can't taste it so don't even bother wasting these ingredients. It's ok to be heavy handed with the salt, 2 tablespoons. 2 bags of tea for a dozen eggs is better than 1. Simmer in a pot for 30 minutes-1hr. In another pot, hard boil eggs, let them cool, and crack the shells. Then soak the eggs in the tea mixture forever...OR alternatively soak for 24 hrs and/or continue simmering the eggs in the tea mix for a few hours. Who wants to waste electricity and watch a pot simmer? I just stored the eggs in the mixture and took my eggs out as I ate them.
On a different but similar note, you can marinate chicken in this mixture. I got this idea from my mother in law who gave us a few drumsticks in her tea mix. I thought it was a really neat idea so I marinated some drumsticks for 2 nights and then pan fried it.
Leave them on each side for 4-5 minutes on high and you'll get a nice crisp. Don't be afraid to make your tea brew stronger and saltier. I was light handed and this didn't have as much flavor as I wanted but you can still taste the subtle tea, the crispy salty skin, and a hint of star anise. YUMMY AND EASY!