Friday, January 8, 2010

Going Vegetarian: Thunder Tea Rice

One of my resolutions this year is to go vegetarian at least once a week, as a small contribution on my part for the sake of the environment (the production of beef and pork take a huge toll on the environment).

Lunch at a health food cafe in the Biopolis area a couple of days ago was for lack of a better description, extremely healthful and virtuous. Hakka Thunder Tea Rice is something that I've been wanting to try for a long time ever since I first heard about it, just because of THAT NAME.

This vegetarian version came with brown rice, beancurd cubes, lightly toasted ground nuts and a goody variety of blanched and diced greens: green beans, kailan, chye sim, four-angle beans. The green tea mixture was real complex.... it comprised ground green tea leaves, basil, mint, coriander and a bunch of other unidentifiable herbs - you pour it into the bowl of rice and greens and stir everything up and eat. It has got a whole bunch of purported health benefits too, like lowering cholesterol, easing digestion and so on...if it is true, this makes one wonder why we need doctors with this kind of super medicine food.
Thunder Tea Rice seems to elicit two kinds of extreme reactions in people: those who love it and those who hate it. Happily, I fell into the former camp - it had a refreshingly herbal and minty taste, not overly strong or bitter or astringent (plus, I happen to like the smell and taste of basil). Best of all, eating it made me full in a very satisfying but not satiated way, and I didn't feel hungry all the way till dinner or sleepy after lunch (a major accomplishment).

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