I found this lovely post via Steamy Kitchen with instructions on how to make Marbled Tea Eggs and just thought I have to try this out some day.
These eggs are made for the Chinese New Year celebration and symbolize golden nuggets, probably prosperity. Generally eaten at room temperature or just slightly warm the fun must be to see what type of marbled design your egg has underneath the shell.
3/4 cup soy sauce
2 star anise
2 tablespoons black tea (or 2 tea bags)
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorn (optional)
2 strips dried tangerine or mandarin orange peel (optional)
1. Cook eggs in water until hard boiled. Save water!
2. After the eggs have cooled use the back of a spoon to crack the entire shell. The more cracks and the deeper they are - the better the outcome. Do not peel the shell off!
3. Place eggs back in water and add in the remaining ingredients.
4. Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately turn the heat to low.
5. Simmer for 1-3 hours, adding a bit of water as the level gets below the eggs.
The longer you simmer, the deeper the flavor and color will be.
To see more images go to Steamy Kitchen