Thursday, August 13, 2009

Hakka Yong Tau Foo

Introducing another of my favorites. Most of you would know that I'm Cantonese but do you know, I'm also Hakka ?

My father had a lot of relatives in Malaysia & I remember many childhood weekends spent in their rubber plantation in JB. I have fond memories of fishing in the stream, learning to tap rubber but mostly of my grand aunt's hakka lei cha.

Lei cha is a fragrant tea based soup grounded together with nuts & sesame seeds & then poured over rice that is topped with a variety of vegetable dishes. I'm no vegetarian but if I ever convert to one, this would be what I can eat everyday. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water. If only I can find something similar here. This is extremely tedious to make which is why my mother never bothered. If anybody knows of a good one, please leave me a comment.

It's not just the lei cha that I love, it's also the communal eating. Everybody takes a bowl of rice, scoops 1-2 tablespoon each of the 4 or 5 vegetable dishes that are laid out, then pours steamy hot fragrant lei cha from a pot into the bowl. This gets repeated twice or three times depending on your appetite so everybody is constantly walking around the table & chatting with one another.

Since I can't get my number one Hakka favorite, I have to contend myself with number two. Over the years, my mother has perfected the recipe & does it the way we love - the filling is a mixture of minced pork, salted fish & garlic. Stuffed in a tofu & then deep fried. Eaten the Hakka way with a lettuce wrapped around.


foodbin said...

the yong tau foo must be yummy with so much fillings-do not know how to appreciate lui cha.

meng said...

hey..u n i are of the same dialet mix! how uncanny...

Anonymous said...

hi hi
There's a shop at Bukit timah plaza, 2nd floor. The hakka shop is called Ngai. I tried their lei cha rice this afternoon. My first time and I love it!

petite fleur said...

foodbin - It's the salted fish that I love in the filling.

meng - I never knew that. haha we can go check out lei cha place together (or are you not into that?)

anon - Thank you so much for the suggestion. Most definitely going to check it out the first chance I can get

meng said... for lunch date whenever u are free!

petite fleur said...

meng - It's a date. I'm dying to have lei cha