The origin of pandan chicken is still a little vague and there has been a lot of dispute about where it came from, but it is majorly a Thai dish but the funny thing is, I was first introduced to pandan chicken from a Nyonya restaurant although this dish is not Nyonya. Being a lass from Sarawak, food like this are relatively non-existent where I lived. So when I first got a taste of it, I immediately fell in love with it. The flavours, spices and aromas were loud and graceful at the same time, if you catch my meaning.
Pandan chicken can be considered quite an old-school recipe because I hardly see people make them anymore. But I’ve always loved it, and trust me it is quite a show-stopping dish because the fragrance of the pandan will permeate the room and you have the chicken that has been steeped in this myriad of aromatics marinade.
While the advanced level of pandan chicken will have the chicken wrapped into a neat 3D triangle, I am settling for the crude home version and just roll the leaves around the chicken. This is a dish everyone should try because pandan leaves are so easily available here. Pandan leaves also have a wide array of nutritional values. It;
- Relieves headache and arthritis.
- Treats ear pains.
- Eases chest pains.
- Reduces fever.
- Treats leprosy, wounds and smallpox.
- As a laxative for children
- Solve several skin problems.
- Strengthen gums and reduces stomach spasms.
- Helps in speeding in the recuperation of women who have just given birth and are still weak
PANDAN CHICKEN RECIPE
3 Chicken breasts, cut into square pieces
Pandan/ Screwpine leaves, washed and dried
Oil for shallow frying
200ml coconut milk
1 teaspoon curry powder/ turmeric powder
1 tablespoon fish sauce
3 stalks lemongrass, use the end parts
1 red onion, chopped roughly
2 garlic cloves
2 fresh red chillies
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white pepper
A bunch of coriander
1. In a blender, add all the ingredients for the marinade above and blend till you have a smooth paste.
2. Place the chicken in a large sandwich bag and pour in the marinade.
3. Rub it around making sure the chicken gets all the marinade. Leave it in the fridge overnight or for at least 3 hours.
4. When you want to cook it, drain the chicken of its marinade and take each piece and wrap it around with the pandan leaves. You may choose to wrap it completely or leave the sides exposed like I did.
5. Secure it with toothpicks.
6. Heat oil in pan for shallow frying, when its hot, drop in the pandan covered chicken.
7. Fry till the leaves have just about lost its green hue. But this depends also on the size of your cut chicken.
8. Take out the toothpicks before serving. Eat with white rice. To eat, just unwrap the leaves.