Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Lahpet: The Pickled Tea of Burma

You may have heard about tea being brewed and drunk as a beverage, but it is unlikely that you have heard of people eating tea. You will be surprised to know that Lahpet is a pickled tea leaf preparation that is considered a delicacy in Burma. The fermented tea leaf pickle or salad comes in two forms, the regular every day pickle that is served with meals and the more elaborate Mandalay lahpet or Ahlu lahpet. The Mandalay lahpet is served in a compartmented tray, with the tea leaf pickle at the center, with fried garlic flakes, roasted peas, roasted peanuts, roasted sesame seeds, dry fish and shrimp, pickled ginger, fried coconut pieces and other exotica like fried grubs and other insects.

Traditionally, lahpet is offered to guests during ceremonies, to monks on their initiation, and to the gods of the forests. It was also used as a peace offering after war, as a symbol of putting the past behind.

Image from Koocrow at Edibly Asian, see link in post body.

The best recipe for lahpet is the one I found at Edibly Asian, which is where I borrowed the image from too.

Here is another middle of the road recipe for making pickled tea. And here is a more detailed one. If you are more of a visual learner, here is one with a video.


  1. Hi Subhorup Dasgupta,
    Its really good to meet you at
    blogwati's place,
    I too hate coffee and l love tea
    thanks for sharing these informative tips.
    Nice to know that you are in Hyd.
    But I got surprised in one thing!!!
    How come a post of Coffee in a tea lover's page LOL
    Keep Inform
    Keep in touch
    Best Regards.

    Subh, please remove the word verification, it will irritate your readers who wants to comment. Tks.

  2. @PV Ariel. Thanks for dropping by and sharing your thoughts. It might sound crazy, but I was quite fond of coffee for a good number of years. In a sense I still am, in terms of taste and flavor perhaps, but no longer like what it does to me. I prefer the meditative and mindful aspect of tea. This change happened over the last decade.

    Coffee post here is because a good amount of traffic to this blog is from Hyderabad, and a good amount of it is from people searching for coffee. Therefore.

    Thanks for bringing up the word verification thing. As this is one of the less popular blogs that I write, I left it on autopilot. With reader interaction building up, your suggestion is well taken, and acted upon. Do visit my other blogs, and do keep coming back.

    1. Hi Subhorup,
      Thanks for your quick response.
      Keep writing
      find little time to drop in my
      placce too. Have a good day.