Chicken chunks wrapped in pandan leaves is probably the first Thai dish that I tried, back in the 90s. As I traveled around the Mekong region through the years I was able to try many versions of this dish. I liked more than one version so I combined the things I liked about them into my version of Chicken in Pandan Leaves or Gai Haaw Bai Dtuey
- 4 chicken breast fillet, skin optional
- 24 Pandan leaves, washed well under running water
- 1 cup canola oil (for frying)
- 2 tbsp. minced garlic
- 2 tbsp. minced coriander
- 2 tbsp. oyster sauce
- 2 tbsp. light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tbsp. ground pepper
- 5 tbsp. sugar
- 2 tbsp. water
- 3 tbsp. light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp. sesame seeds, toasted
- Cut the chicken breasts into 2 x 2-inch chunks. Each breast will yield 6 pieces, for a total of 24 pieces.
- In a medium bowl, mix all the marinade ingredients very well then marinate the chicken for at least an hour. Cover and refrigerate while marinating.
- Wrap each chicken chunk in the pandan leaves, cut off the ends then place in a steamer basket. Steam for 10 minutes.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or frying pan. Drain the excess juice from the steamer basket before frying the pandan parcels in batches.
- Deep fry for about 2 minutes then drain in paper towels.
- To make the sauce, mix all the ingredients except the sesame seeds in a sauce pan and heat very close to boiling over a medium flame. Pour the sauce in a dipping bowl then top with the sesame seeds.
- Serve with rice and pickled vegetables. Makes 4-6 servings.
- Chicken thigh fillet is an excellent substitute for chicken breast.
- This is best served hot. If you’re saving it for later meals, you can refrigerate or even freeze the chicken after steaming it.