Thunder Tea Rice (Hakka Lei Cha Rice) is a Malaysian dish that brings hints of bitterness, sweetness and saltiness to every mouthful and it certainly makes an extremely healthy addition to anyone’s diet. Originating in Malaysia, it’s basically rice cooked in a special tea soup or Lei Cha that usually contains basil, mint, tea leaves, coriander, peanuts, sesame seeds and salt. Thunder Tea Rice is served with up to 12 vegetables, such as green beans chopped into small pieces, and crunchy toppings that include roasted peanuts or dried shrimp. While our Thunder Tea Rice recipe makes enough for four to six servings, it’s easy to multiply up if you’re having a party.
Ingredients for Thunder Tea Rice
- Cooked rice for 6 people
- 900g of mixed green vegetables (chopped)
- 300g Mani Cai sweet leaf bush
- 3 garlic cloves
- Toppings – dried shrimp, preserved radish, chopped peanuts
- (The following ingredients are for the tea soup) 50g basil leaves
- 20g mint leaves
- 50g coriander leaves
- 80g roasted peanuts
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- 1 tsp tea leaves
- Salt to taste
- 1 and 1/2 cups boiling water
Heat 1tsp oil in a wok and add the garlic, stir-frying until mushy. Season and remove from the wok. In another 1 tsp oil stir fry the green vegetables, seasoning as you go. Set aside.
Add 1 tsp oil to the same wok. Return the garlic and fry for a further 30 seconds before adding the dried shrimp. Cook for 1 minute then remove. In a little oil, stir fry the remaining ingredients for about 5 minutes.
Blend soup ingredients into a paste using a food processor. Place the paste in a large bowl and pour on 1 cup of hot water, stirring well. Taste and season. Add the rest of the water, stir and let it sit for 15 minutes. Portion the cooked rice into deep individual bowls. Arrange the veg and toppings on top and, immediately before serving, pour over the tea soup.
Rice dishes in Singapore
If making your own Thunder Tea Soup sounds a little daunting but you want to treat your taste buds to some Malaysian flavours, then don’t worry – foodpanda can help. Check out Malaysian restaurants in Singapore such as Penang Culture and Guang Hoe Soo.