Boys Who Can Cook

Tea-Leaf Salad

6 servings


30 minutes

total time


2 tablespoons loose green tea leaves, such as sencha or Dragonwell (6 bags of green tea)

2 cups very hot water (about 190 degrees F)

1 clove garlic, coarsely chopped

½ teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons fried garlic oil (see Tips) or canola oil

1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar

4 cups shredded green cabbage

1 ½ cups roughly chopped cherry tomatoes

½ jalapeño or serrano chile, seeded and minced

¼ cup fried garlic (see Tips)

¼ cup coarsely chopped toasted peanuts

¼ cup fried yellow split peas (see Tips)

1 tablespoon fried garlic oil (see Tips) or canola oil

1 tablespoon lime juice

2 teaspoons fish sauce (see Tips)

½ cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons dried shrimp powder (optional; see Tips)

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper


To prepare dressing: Steep tea leaves in hot water for 3 minutes. Drain and press excess water out of the tea leaves (you can drink the tea). Let cool to room temperature.

Combine the tea leaves, fresh garlic and salt in a mini food processor; pulse to combine. With the motor running, drizzle in 3 tablespoons oil and vinegar.

To assemble salad: Make a bed of cabbage on a round, rimmed serving platter or in a shallow bowl. Spoon the dressing into the center. Arrange piles of tomatoes, jalapeño (or serrano), fried garlic, peanuts and split peas around the dressing. Drizzle oil, lime juice and fish sauce over the top and sprinkle with cilantro, shrimp powder (if using) and crushed red pepper. Mix tableside with 2 forks.


Serving Size



180 kcal

Total Fat

13 g

Saturated Fat

1 g

Unsaturated Fat

0 g

Trans Fat





341 mg

Total Carbohydrate

14 g

Dietary Fiber

5 g

Total Sugars

3 g


5 g

6 servings


30 minutes

total time
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