Make Ahead

Tea Egg Salad

October  4, 2022
2 Ratings
Photo by Karen Mordechai
  • Serves 12 appetizers
Author Notes

Last Chinese New Year I made tea eggs and a black bean, smoked tea pork rib dish. The next day I made egg salad and we served canapes with the egg and a sliver of pork. It was divine and I can't go back to any other kind of egg salad. It would be absurd to make these beautiful eggs just for a salad, so this recipe is for a dozen. Six for enjoying whole and six for making a salad for appetizers. The liquid the eggs steep in can be saved to braise pork ribs that get finished on the grill. Serve the ribs with the eggs, roasted sweet potatoes and sesame kale for a perfect meal. —savorthis

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: savorthis hails from Denver, Colorado and counts front end web design, marketing, and of course, cooking among her talents.
WHAT: A peppery salad with beautiful tea-soaked eggs.
HOW: Cracked eggs soak in smoky Lapsang Souchong tea overnight before folding in the dressing ingredients.
WHY WE LOVE IT: Served on crackers, this salad makes a great cocktail snack. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 12 eggs
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 Lapsang souchong tea bags or 3 T loose
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise pods
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon szechuan peppercorns (black peppercorns work too)
  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced
  • pepper
  • rice crackers
  1. Put eggs in one layer in pot and cover with water. Bring to simmer, turn off heat, cover and let sit 4 minutes. Drain, rinse with cold water. Gently crack all over with the back of a spoon enough to make a spider web of cracks, but not break the egg.
  2. Put eggs back in empty pot, add all ingredients through szechuan peppercorns. Bring to a boil then reduce to the lowest simmer for 30 minutes. Let cool then steep overnight if possible or as long as you can.
  3. Reduce one cup steeping liquid by half. Mix 3 teaspoons with mayo, green onion and black pepper.
  4. Carefully peel eggs. Serve six as is with smoked salt and slice and gently fold remaining six with mayo mixture. Or double mayo, admire whole eggs and mix them all. Serve on rice crackers with cilantro and pepper.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • I_Fortuna
  • hardlikearmour
  • gr8chefmb
  • dana_tomlin
  • savorthis
Co-Owner/Designer @ Where Wood Meets Steel-Custom Furniture

22 Reviews

smonfor July 12, 2013
So I made this as a salad for a picnic - it was a nice, subtle flavour and a nice change from regular salads that you might find - those who tried it enjoyed it. I couldn't find the smoked tea and so just used British black tea bags. I was out of cinnamon sticks and there were none at the market so I used ground. It was nice, but I think it would be better with the smoked tea and also served as recommended on small crackers or in sandwiches because as a salad - it isn't very attractive (brown goop)
smonfor July 1, 2013
I am planning to make this recipe for a crowd - it sounds like the marinade is more than enough for the eggs in the recipe - if I double the recipe for 24 eggs, should I double the spices, or will the amount in the recipe be enough?
savorthis July 1, 2013
You need enough liquid to cover the eggs while they simmer, then steep so I would double everything.
I_Fortuna June 29, 2013
Great recipe! This would go well with many types of main dishes. I think it is imperative to make this recipe with Lapsang Souchang tea or Russian Caravan tea. I love this tea on its own too. If you are not getting nice dark lines on your eggs, try using older eggs. Not only do they peel easier, it seems the lines show up better. Star anise and fennel are also great for these eggs.
Roxmarie August 13, 2012
I was so excited about the tea eggs that i never got around to making the mayonnaise part, but the marinade is so sublime that i'm sure it would be excellent.

I had some large tamari/soy rice cakes, and a jar of homemade cilantro pesto (just cilantro, oil, and i believe some salt). I mixed a tablespoon of the cilantro with a dash of sesame oil and a double dash of soy and spread that on the rice cakes. Top with sliced tea eggs and sprinkle with alder-smoked salt. This also satisfied my craving for a tempura-fried tea egg, which I have not completely abandoned. Thanks Marina - this recipe is a lot of fun.
hardlikearmour August 13, 2012
Love the flavors going on in this salad, it's far more interesting (and I think delicious) than a traditional egg salad. My only complaint is a personal preference thing - I thought it had too much mayo, so scaled back on the second batch I made. Cheers to a lovely recipe!
savorthis August 13, 2012
Thank you. Mayo is definitely a custom order here too. My husband likes a lot more of it than I do so with any similar salad or sandwich I take my portion first and give him a little extra.
Tedsdottir August 6, 2012
Super recipe! I am always looking for recipes with a new angle to them. This Asian influence is just the right touch. I can hardly wait to serve it at my next meeting.
gr8chefmb August 5, 2012
I have to admit that on the face of it, I thought an egg salad was kind of a safe choice to choose as a finalist. However, it sounds divine since I have read the recipe through. Congratulations on being selected as a finalist. Can't wait to try this recipe.
savorthis August 5, 2012
Thanks gr8chefmb. I hope you do try it and enjoy it.
dana_tomlin August 5, 2012
I tested this recipe for the contest and loved it! These are my notes:
not only was this dish really tasty - it was fun to make! Boiling the eggs within the spiced broth created a sweet, fennel aroma AND they look amazing. Once the eggs were boiled and left to sit for as long as i could stand it, a simple egg salad was made.the recipe calls for cooking down the broth and using 3T in the mayo mixture- this was too much liquid. I should reduced it more. I like that u get 3 things out of this recipe: tea eggs, egg salad, and leftover broth for a marinade
* i substituted black tea for lapsang souchang. I am making it again, today, with lapsang souchong
savorthis August 5, 2012
Thank you for testing the recipe! I am curious to hear how you like the smokey tea. I know people who love drinking it just like tea which I have to say is not appealing to me, but I use it a lot with pork and sweet potatoes. I did also just have a smokey mezcal cocktail (with lime, ginger and cassis) and I wonder how lapsang souchong would be in a cocktail....
savorthis August 3, 2012
Thank you everyone for your nice compliments. It's exciting to be a finalist with one of my favorite recipes. If any of you try it, I'd love to hear what you think.
AntoniaJames August 3, 2012
Marvelous! Just love it. Congrats on the selection as a finalist! ;o)
BoulderGalinTokyo August 3, 2012
Congrats on bringing Asian flavors into mainstream America! Always loved these tea drenched eggs but never thought to add mayo. Wonderful!
NBrush August 2, 2012
Congratulations on being a finalist, and it is a pleasure to see such a novel, tasty recipe. I love your take on Asian flavors.
gingerroot August 2, 2012
Congratulations savorthis! I'm so happy to see your beautiful tea egg salad as a finalist. I had a feeling...
meganvt01 August 2, 2012
SO beautiful and l can't wait to try this! Congrats on being a finalist.
susan G. August 2, 2012
Congratulations! I was one of the testers, and I was enchanted by the process and the results. Who would have thought HB eggs could be so sensual!
savorthis August 2, 2012
Thanks Susan!
gingerroot July 19, 2012
This is a beautiful and delicious sounding twist on egg salad.
savorthis July 16, 2012
Last night we used the steeping liquid to make some delicious country style pork ribs. I started by browning the ribs in the pot of my pressure cooker, then cooked some onions, garlic, ginger and fermented black beans in the fat. I added the steeping liquid, and a couple more cups of water, a bit more soy and another tea bag and steeped for a few minutes. I then removed the tea bag, added the ribs and pressure cooked them about 17 minutes. We then strained and skimmed the liquid, reduced it to make it a bit thicker and threw the ribs on the grill, basting with the sauce. We also grilled sweet potato wedges and made a pile of swiss chard with sesame vinaigrette. Delish.