Mention ‘lei cha’ and you will get either very positive response or a grunt of dislike by most people. I personally know some friends who avoid lei cha like a plague but I know an equal number of them who worship leicha thinking that it’s one of the best creations ever by the Hakka descent. Lei cha is essentially a tea-based broth comprising a mixture of tea leaves and herbs that are pounded together, forming a green substance that is then poured onto a bowl of rice topped with various cut vegetables and nuts. Needless to say, this ‘green’ combination is more healthy than it is anything else, but might not bode well with people who don’t fancy vegetables. Wok Dish Way is one of the recent establishments that pride itself with traditional lei cha recipes that have been passed down from older generations of the family.
Hakka Lei Cha
Wok Dish Way in red
Located along the ‘dessert street’ of Kota Damansara, Wok Dish Way is a family business focusing on traditional home-cooked dishes with recipes from grandparents, village neighbours and the like. Their signature dish on the menu is the Buzidao Lei Cha, served with a myriad of side dishes and a bowl of green soup. There is an option of eating the lei cha with white rice or fried rice, but I personally preferred the fried rice which was more fragrant and savoury. It was my first ever attempt at eating lei cha and I proceeded with care since I’m not that big on vege. With a bowl of rice, I first added a spoonful of each side dish on top – cabbage, bean curd, potato leaves, french beans, nuts, dried radish – so far, so good. Gingerly, I added a few spoonfuls of the green soup onto my rice, just a few to start with, and mixed them up well. Took a bite, and it’s not that bad! Well I didn’t soak my rice with plenty of soup like some people did but I think for a beginner, I did quite well. In fact, I enjoyed it and ended up having two bowls of rice – 1 with white rice and another with fried rice. It tasted just like rice with mixed vegetables and soup, but I think the nuts and dried radish made all the difference. They gave the whole combination a nice crunchy texture and a savoury taste to it. I have a feeling I might even be more adventurous and add in more of the soup next time.
Set of leicha with fried rice
Leicha side dishes
Nuts and dried radish
The essence of leicha
BuZiDao Lei Cha / 步滋道擂茶 (RM7.90)
Mixed rice with vegetables
BuZiDao LeiCha (with fried rice) / 步滋道擂茶炒饭 (RM9.40)
Apart from the traditional Hakka dish, they also serve traditional Teochew dish, just like the Special TeoChew Fried Kuey Tiao. What appeared to look like ‘wat tan hor’ turned out to be slightly different. The smooth ‘hor fun’ or flat noodles were mixed with egg batter and then pan fried to a crispy finish. The serving looked like layers of golden pancakes topped with savoury gravy, seafood and vegetables, similar to wat tan hor. But a closer look at the pancakes revealed that they’re actually omelette with noodles embedded within – the unique way of serving turned out to be quite tasty. The fact that the noodles were pan fried instead of deep fried also made it a healthier option!
Special TeoChew Fried Kuey Tiao / 招牌蛋香潮州果条 ( RM7.9)
We tried the Curry Chicken as well – thick, savoury and spicy curry soaking generous amount of chicken pieces that must have been simmered for hours judging from the flavourful outcome. The fragrance of coconut milk was apparent, and the soft boiled potatoes were so good after absorbing the flavours of the curry.
Curry Chicken/咖喱鸡 (RM8.90)
My favourite of the the lot would definitely be the Claypot Vinegar Pork’s Trotter (chu keok chou). When I was staying with my grandparents, the smell of vinegar pork trotter would fill the whole house whenever grandma cooked it. Just the very aroma of it was enough to make anyone hungry and salivate, it’s that powerful. Thankfully, the version here was pretty good too! The thick and pungent vinegar-based broth was sour, sweet and a little spicy, perfect to go with rice. This pot had a nice combination of fatty and lean meat too, all cooked to a nice and tender texture.
Claypot Vinegar Pork’s Trotter/ 砂煲猪脚醋 (RM11.90)
Tender pork trotter
My second favourite dish of the night was the Nanru Pork, deep fried pork with ‘nam yue’ or fermented bean curd, which turned out to be exceptionally good! It was aromatic and fried to a golden finish, with crispy edges and juicy meat within. The nam yue brought about a savoury flavour that really complemented the pork well. It reminded me of the deep fried pork that I had back in Bangkok.
Nanru Pork / 南乳炸肉 (RM8 – small / RM15 – big)
Finally, we had a bowl of Red Bean dessert to end the meal on a sweet note.
Red Bean (RM2.90)
The overall dinner experience was rather pleasant and warm, mostly because the dishes were traditional and tasted like home-cooked food. If it’s your first time trying out lei cha, this is a good place to start! 🙂
Wok Dish Way
Wok Dish Way (same row with Snowflake, opposite Courts)
2A－1, Jalan PJU 5/10, Kota Damansara,
47810 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Tel No.: +6018-2655988
Opening Hours: Mon – Sun: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm