The Pandanus Amaryllifolius (not any other Screwpine) ~ Pandan for short breaks into a growth gusto when Spring is about to turn to Summer. It must feel like the Tropics to them so ‘babies’ and aerial roots appear at a crazy rate.
This is the time to carefully check between leaves because unless you separate the leaves and inspect, chances are, small young plants will not be seen until too late ~ dehydrated and stunted. Cut the long leaves hiding them if required, be merciless, as the ‘babies’ need light and growth space.
Pandan “babies” just springing up from parent plant and leaves cut off giving them breathing space.
A thick healthy root is about to spring forth.
When that healthy root grows up to 2″, it will be ideal to remove the baby plant from the parent to have more subaerial roots develop in water.
With so many leaves cut off today, what do I do with them? Continue reading
With no “hawkers”, which is what we call food vendors in Singapore, when I have a craving, I invent ways of creating what will satiate.
Nasi Lemak is rice dish that is cooked in/mixed with coconut milk. It is commonly sold in any foodcourt, hawker center & even coffee-shops … but alas, not where I live right now. I craved Pandan Nasi Lemak yesterday, so to the garden, then to the kitchen, then the cooking began.
Long, fibrous Pandan leaves were cut up.
Put in my little cup blender with coconut cream.
Add 1 cup of water or what your “mini” blender allows, then blend away…
Blended concoction poured through a tea strainer into rice pot.
Add some salt and more water to your rice – up to the required (usual) level of cooking – then cover and press the “Cook” button. Pandan Nasi Lemak is in the making.
I decided to be really Singaporean and knocked up some dried anchovies and peanuts which usually accompanies this dish.
Dried Anchovies and Salted Peanuts
So what did I end up having for dinner?
With all the Pandan trimming and propagating activity recently, I had a handful of leaves ~ nice and green ~ for use.
Fresh Pandan Leaves
Coincidentally I had a guest from Singapore, taking a course in the US and homesick for Singapore food, so what better way to use them.
One dish which can’t be found in Asian restaurants in the US is Pandan Wrapped Chicken. In Asia this dish is deep-fried but I have improvised it in the past and it works just as well.
Wrapped up Chicken
After lightly seasoning the chicken pieces with a mixture of mashed ginger, plum sauce, pepper and rice wine, they were wrapped up in Pandan leaves and left in the refrigerator to marinate for over an hour.
Then I brushed, to coat them with sesame oil, and placed them in a 300°F oven to slow bake for about 30 mins.
So there … my guest had Pandan Wrapped Chicken with Pineapple Shrimp Fried Rice.
Pineapple Shrimp Fried Rice