Thai pandan chicken

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As the summer finally appears officially the season of grilling and outdoor cooking also starts. Instead of throwing chunks of meat on your grill, this is a good authentic alternative for those hot summer nights. This dish can be served as an appetizer or as an stand alone dish. Many may be put off thinking this a lot of work. Not really, at least it doesnt last to ruin your whole day. Furthermore you’ll find an extremely satisfied family asking for more, when its done.

Makes ~16 packages.


4 chicken drumsticks with thighs
~16 long pandan leaves

2 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp soja sauce
Dash sesame oil
1 tbsp coriander seeds, grinded
Dried chilly (to taste!)
1 tsp sugar or 1 tbsp. honey
Dash sherry
1 tbsp dark soja sauce or ketchap manis
1 tsp corn starch / mondamin
2 cloves garlic



Debone the chicken and cut them into max. 6x6cm pieces. Marinade the chicken with the marinade for at least 2 hrs in the fridge.

Clean/ rinse the pandan leaves with water. Pack each chicken pieces with the pandan leaves. You could either weave the pandan leaves in one another or roll them around the chicken. Then secure the pack with a toothpick. Or, you could pack them with just one long pandan leave into a small packet. (It’s like tieing up a tie) The more the chicken is covered with the pandan leaves, the more pungent it will be. The better packed it is the juicier the meat will be.

There are a few ways how you can then cook them. You can grill them in an open fire, deep fry or bake them in the oven. I chose to grill them as the day was early and weather good. Moreever this brings an even stronger flavour to the chicken.

Make sure the fire is not too strong. The leaves should not burn already from the start. The chicken is cooked when the meat is not soft and wobbly anymore. It took me about 40 minutes grilling time but check every now and then.

Serve hot with steamed rice and sweet chilly or nam chim sauce.