I found this recipe in The Tea Book, by Sara Perry, and I had to try it. Apparently in the Orient, tea eggs are sold by street vendors. This would be an interesting alternative to the usual hard boiled egg, served on a platter for afternoon tea. Because the spiderweb pattern is so pretty, I would place some of the shells and even a whole egg or two on the platter with the cut eggs. As usual, I modified it to what I had handy, so this recipe is not exact to the book.
3-4 cups water
2 tbsp black tea leaves (4 tea bags)
2 tsp orange peel
1 tbsp salt
Put eggs in pot with water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and put the eggs in cold water until they're easily handled. With the back of a spoon, tap the shells of each egg to make a cobweb of cracks. Return water to heat and add tea, orange peel (you can use fresh by stripping the peel like you would an apple, or buy dried in the spice section of your grocery store), salt and eggs. Bring back to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour. Remove from heat and let the eggs soak in covered pan for 30 minutes.
The flavor is subtle and light. The egg on the left here had a large crack in it, so it got a little too brown all over, but still, the marble effect is pretty. The egg on the right is closer to the picture in the book.
UPDATE: The Carnival of the Recipes is up, hosted this week by the Feisty One. Go check out all the goodies!