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Pandan-Wrapped Chicken, Guest Post by Foodiva’s Kitchen

by Spicie Foodie on August 31, 2011

Hi everyone. While I attempt to get back to some sort of normalcy and back to work my dear friend Maya, of Foodiva’s Kitchen, so graciously volunteered to help me out with a guest post. Maya like your food you are beautiful and so giving, I dearly appreciate everything you’ve done for me. I will be back soon with some new recipes but until then please help me give Maya a very warm welcome.

Chicken, Pandan Wrapped Chicken© Foodiva’s Kitchen

Hi I’m Maya, owner of Foodiva’s Kitchen and I’m happy to step in and guest post for Nancy today. As you may already know, she and her husband had recently lost their long-time companion and very loving dog, Panchito and I offered to help out while she takes some well-needed time off to reflect on their great loss. Right now, I live about 7,000 miles (or 13,000 kilometres) away from Nancy, so while I am unable to comfort her in person, I felt the least I could do for her is this.

Chicken, Pandan Wrapped Chicken© Foodiva’s Kitchen

I chose to share a recipe that’s very popular in Southeast Asia, and if you’ve ever been to Thailand, you’ve probably had this dish. It’s called Pandan Chicken, pieces of boneless chicken marinated in a flavorful coriander-soy-garlic mixture and wrapped in another aromatic ingredient, pandan leaves or screwpine. As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, the prevalent usage of pandan in Asian cuisine is akin to the usage of vanilla. Unlike vanilla though, we use pandan to flavor a range of dishes, from sweet to savory ones as well.

Chicken, Pandan Wrapped Chicken© Foodiva’s Kitchen

Pandan leaves bear a piney, sweet, very fragrant scent only once they’re slightly wilted and crushed. Strangely enough, the really fresh ones don’t give off much aroma. Just purely for information in case you’ll have a use for this someday… pandan is also a weapon of mass slaughter for certain annoying household pests (not pets). The distinct scent of pandan apparently drives cockroaches nuts and knocks them dead. So whenever there’s been a roach infestation problem, we never call the pest control guy but just scatter pandan leaves all over the house. It’s way cheaper. One thing though, if you have a pandan plant in your garden, be prepared to welcome snakes as well because they love to reside inside the cooling pandan bushes. As with everything else in life, there are pros and cons to something magical!

But back to the pros, I’ve actually experimented with flavoring many of my dishes with pandan – be it breads, desserts, rice, ice creams, drinks, even meats. This chicken dish is one of the easiest ones to do. Fresh pandan leaves may be difficult to get outside our region, but some Asian groceries in the US and Europe may carry frozen ones. If you are able to get hold of some, simply thaw and wash them well before use. Pandan essence is also available in small bottles so you can add a few drops to the chicken marinade if you wish to try this recipe out. Although I must add, having no pandan leaves takes out the pleasure of unwrapping the chicken before you eat them…

Chicken, Pandan Wrapped Chicken© Foodiva’s Kitchen

Even though you may not be able to cook this now, when you come out to visit (or live in) Southeast Asia, you now know what’s on your foodie list to try.

Nancy, it’s been a joy to take over your blog even if it’s only for one day. You go ahead and continue to take good care of yourself, girl!

Pandan-Wrapped Chicken

500 grams (about 1 lb) boneless chicken breasts
1 ½ tablespoons crushed coriander seeds
1 ½ tablespoons minced garlic
½ teaspoon ground pepper
1 tablespoon palm or caster sugar
1 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons oyster sauce or BBQ sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon milk
15 pandan leaves, cleaned well and cut into two equal pieces
30 wooden toothpicks
Oil, for frying

1. Cut the chicken into 2-inch chunks.
2. Crush the coriander seeds in a mortar and pestle to or grind coarsely in a grinder. Transfer to a bowl and add garlic and pepper. Add soy sauce, sugar, oyster/BBQ sauce, sesame oil and milk. Mix well.
3. Add the chicken pieces to the marinade and mix well. Cover and leave for at least an hour in the refrigerator.
4. When the chicken is finished marinating, create little ‘pandan-leaf’ packets by wrapping a strip of pandan leaf around each piece of chicken, leaving the ends exposed. Secure the pandan ends with a wooden toothpick.
5. Shallow fry the leaf packets on medium heat for about 3 minutes per side, until the meat is browned.
6. Unwrap and discard pandan leaf before eating. Serve with the sauce below.

Sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
4 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons black soy sauce
1 tablespoon vinegar or lime juice
2-3 tablespoons palm or caster sugar
½ teaspoon minced fresh ginger

1. Dry roast the sesame seeds in a pan on medium-low heat until browned and set aside.
2. In a saucepan, simmer the rest of the sauce ingredients on medium-low heat until it thickens, about 5 minutes.
3. Top the sauce with the sesame seeds and serve with the pandan chicken.

 

Check out another delish Pandan recipe by Ms. Foodiva:
Pandan and Honey Melon Ice Cream

in Asian,Chicken,Guest Posts,Thai

{ 52 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Michelle chin August 31, 2011 at 8:03 AM

I’ve totally bookmarked this recipe. :) My sister loves pandan chicken but i never thought of making it. thanks for reminding me!

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2 Spicie Foodie August 31, 2011 at 9:16 AM

Thanks Michelle! Maya’s photos alone make the tummy grumble. I’m sure you’ll love it.

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3 Yasmeen @ Wandering Spice August 31, 2011 at 8:52 AM

Ooh! I first tried this at a food festival in Melbourne last year. So yummy! Yours look perfect.

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4 Spicie Foodie August 31, 2011 at 9:16 AM

Lucky for you and Maya’s does looks so yummy!

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5 Maya September 1, 2011 at 11:55 AM

Thanks, Yasmeen. At least you know what pandan smells and tastes like already, and isn’t it just yummy with chicken?

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6 Jill Colonna August 31, 2011 at 9:25 AM

So sorry to hear about Nancy’s loss. I absolutely loved your guest post, Maya. I’m just back from Thailand on holiday and appreciate this gorgeous dish. I also had no idea that cockroaches hate pandan leaves – handy to know if needed! Your photos are so beautiful and can smell that feast for the eyes from here!

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7 Maya September 1, 2011 at 11:58 AM

Jill, you just returned from Thailand? Lucky you! Now that you know how delicious pandan chicken is, I really hope I’ve done this Thai dish some justice :-).

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8 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 8:04 AM

Hi Jill, Thank you. I also agree and love Maya’s guest post and her photos are beautiful.

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9 Maya August 31, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Hi Nancy, the only sad thing about this recipe is that you probably won’t be able to get fresh leaves like these in Prague. Tell you what, my friend is going to London next week and she’ll be bringing these fresh pandan leaves from me, and mail them over to you. Hah, nothing is impossible as far as foodie dreams go! Glad you liked this and the pandan ice cream recipe :-).

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10 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 8:23 AM

Hi Maya, That is true I probably wont be able to find them fresh. Oh Maya you are just too kind. I don’t want to inconvenience you or your friend and certainly not cause any problems for her at the airport. Hehe, no I guess nothing is impossible:)
Thanks again for everything you’ve done, it means the so much. Yes I loved both of your pandan recipes.

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11 Maria August 31, 2011 at 1:27 PM

Hey Maya so sweet of you I am touched god bless u :)

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12 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:00 PM

Aww, thank you, Maria. It was really my pleasure to do this for Nancy!

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13 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 8:24 AM

Maya is one of the sweetest girls I know. All her support is very touching. It’s always a pleasure for me to host you Maya.

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14 Sandra's Easy Cooking August 31, 2011 at 1:43 PM

Nancy, isn’t Maya the sweetest..I adore this woman and it was so nice of her to help and comfort you this way.
Maya, this is very delicious looking presentation, and photos. I love this idea and recipe..i can’t wait to try it!
Both of you have a restful day! xoxo

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15 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:04 PM

Hey, I adore you too, Supermama! And many thanks, Sandra, you’re one of the loveliest friends to have in the blogosphere…mwaahs!

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16 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:32 AM

Hi Sandra, Yes Maya is so sweet and thoughtful. I couldn’t agree more, everyone adores Maya:)

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17 Liz August 31, 2011 at 2:17 PM

What a beautiful and delicious dish, Maya! Now to hunt down some pandan leaves :)

Thinking of you, Nancy~xoxo

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18 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:05 PM

Good luck with your pandan hunting mission, Lizzy! :-)

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19 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:33 AM

Thank you Lizzy and I hope you come across them soon.

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20 Reem | Simply Reem August 31, 2011 at 3:24 PM

What a beautiful dish!!! Awesome pictures……
God this look Awesome……

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21 Ana Helena Campbell August 31, 2011 at 5:05 PM

I am so sorry to hear about Nancy’s dog. I had little Maltese for 13 years and was so sad when she died. She was my sweetie. You are a good friend Maya. I am sure she feels really blessed by you. Thanks for another amazing recipe.

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22 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:09 PM

Ana Helena, so sorry to hear about your sweetie, but I guess you know exactly what Nancy is going through right now. I really feel blessed to have her as a friend too.

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23 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:35 AM

Hi Ana, Thank you. As Maya said you know exactly what I’m feeling and going through. I do feel blessed having Maya as a friend.

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24 Trix August 31, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Hi Maya – So sweet of you to help Nancy out … losing a pet is like losing a member of the family. A beautiful dish. xoxo

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25 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:14 PM

Trixibelle, I recall that we both lost our pets, Pete and Bruce Lee around the same time last year. And that was how we started to bond as friends, remember? Through our broken hearts rose a really beautiful friendship! The universe sure works in funny ways :-).

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26 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:37 AM

Hi Trix, Yes she is just so kind and giving. I also remember your sweet Pete as well as Bruce Lee.
Maya you are so right our broken hearts have brought as all together.

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27 Lilly August 31, 2011 at 5:45 PM

After a few days of pork this chicken is definitely on the menu! Stunning pictures and great use of the pandan.

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28 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:37 AM

You must try Maya’s recipe soon Lilly.

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29 patty August 31, 2011 at 7:02 PM

Beautiful post Maya! I will look for Pandan leaves, now you’ve got me interested in this method for cooking chicken;-) Take care Nancy;-)

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30 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:17 PM

Aahhh….another pandan quest. Try substituting it with banana leaves and grilling the chicken instead. It’s equally yummy, Patty!

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31 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:38 AM

Hi Patty, Thank you.

Maya that is such a great suggestion. But you may have to start a Pandan exporting business too:)

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32 Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 9:45 AM

Hahaha…what a thought! Just don’t call me the Pandan Queen!

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33 Spicie Foodie September 3, 2011 at 10:13 AM

Haha, Pandan Queen. Don’t worry I wont, hehe.

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34 Ann September 1, 2011 at 2:02 AM

Hi Maya – FABULOUS recipe an you are sweeter than honey to do this. I really like this recipe! Nancy, we’re thinking of you….

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35 Maya September 1, 2011 at 12:20 PM

Ann, thanks. The crushed coriander seeds really give the chicken a punchy flavor as well. Try it even without the pandan and see if you like it.

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36 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:39 AM

Hi Ann, Thank you. Yes everything Maya cooks or bakes is FABULOUS!

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37 Jill @ Dulce Dough September 1, 2011 at 3:54 AM

Maya’s recipe looks amazing! How sweet of her to help you out. I’ve never had pandan wrapped chicken but would sure love to give it a try!

Thinking of you Nancy!

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38 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:40 AM

Thank you Jill. It looks like Pandan wrapped chicken will be on many tables around the world now thanks to Maya.

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39 Vicki Bensinger September 1, 2011 at 11:57 AM

This looks delicious and fun to make. I love recipes like this. Thank you for sharing it.

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40 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:40 AM

Thanks Vicki and I’m sure Maya will like reading your comment.

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41 Amy @ Gastronome Tart September 1, 2011 at 2:45 PM

I have never been to Thailand (Definitely on my list) however, this looks fabulous and delicious!

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42 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:41 AM

Thailand is also on my list as is this dish. Maybe I’ll just stop over and visit Maya so she can cook it for me .

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43 Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 9:48 AM

Visit me and we’ll go to Thailand together!

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44 Spicie Foodie September 3, 2011 at 10:14 AM

Now that sounds like a great plan! Be ready because I’m going to quadruple my weight. Haha, that’s scary.

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45 anna September 2, 2011 at 12:12 AM

beautiful dish! makes me think about how i could use vanilla in a savory context…

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46 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 10:41 AM

Thanks for the comment Anna. That is true and sounds like a fun experiment.

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47 Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 9:51 AM

Anna, that thought crossed my mind too when I was doing this post. Savory vanilla quiche/roast/rice…how about that?

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48 Spicie Foodie September 2, 2011 at 8:03 AM

Maya thank you so much for helping me out and for writing a stellar guest post. The chicken looks so juicy and delicious. I’ve heard of Pandan leaves but don’t think I’ve come across them. How great that you can use Pandan as a sweet or savory ingredient. Not to mention as a natural pest control.
It’s lunchtime and now my mouth is gathering:)

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49 Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 9:59 AM

If they make it through customs in Heathrow, the pandan leaves will be on their way to you next week! Haha…I like the excitement of smuggling foodie things in, don’t you? Well, if they are confiscated, they’re only leaves after all, At least I can say I tried :-).

(Btw, I have really FAB friends who would do virtually anything for me, so doing this is no problem. I’m totally spoilt and very, very lucky!)

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50 Magic of Spice September 2, 2011 at 9:17 PM

You are such a sweetheart Maya! This is a great guest post, and your presentation of this dish is just amazing! Hugs
And hugs to you as well Nancy

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51 Spicie Foodie September 3, 2011 at 8:42 AM

Thanks Alisha and yes Maya is such a sweetie.

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52 Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen September 3, 2011 at 9:47 AM

Oh Alisha, it wasn’t a big deal. I was truly happy to do it for our Spicie gal, Nancy :-).

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