Chick it out! Pandan Fried Chicken (PFC)

Posted by Dani (@dani_sunario), Melbourne.

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Fried chicken is one of life’s greatest pleasures. Who doesn’t love the combination of salty and crunchy every once in a while?

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I have a friend (who shall remain entirely anonymous) who has been known to wink at the guy in the drive-thru at our local KFC in order to score an extra Wicked Wing in her pack. From this day on, they shall forevermore be known as Wicked Winks.


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Our recipe for Pandan Fried Chicken is little twist on the classic bucket-of-fried-chicken idea, introducing South East Asian flavours to an old favourite. Bring it along to your next party and you won’t be able to stop all the chicks (ha, sorry!) winking at you!

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Pandan is the Asian version of Vanilla – it’s a ridiculously aromatic and the longer you leave the chicken wrapped in it, the more fragrant it will taste. Pandan and coconut are always a winning combination, so tie some leaves in a knot and add some to your next curry. You can buy the leaves frozen from your local Asian grocer.

Pandan Fried Chicken
Serves 6, as an entree

250g chicken breast
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon tumeric
1 teaspoon dried chili flakes
1 chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
1 teaspoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon caramel soy sauce
1 teaspoon chilli oil
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salsa picante (or tabasco/sriracha)
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon crushed ginger
1 tablespoon lemongrass, sliced thinly, white part only
3 kaffir lime leaves, stems removed and sliced finely
200mL coconut milk
juice of half a lime
pinch of salt
Pandan leaves for wrapping
Bamboo skewers, soaked for 30 minutes in cold water
Neutral oil for shallow frying

Cut chicken breast into bite sized pieces.

Combine remaining ingredients in a bowl and season with salt.

Add the chicken pieces to the marinade and sit in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. the flavour becomes more intense over time and the meat becomes tender in the acidity of the lime juice.

Wrap each piece of chicken in a pandan leaf securing with a bamboo skewer, before shallow frying in hot oil for 6-8 minutes. Use the skewer to turn the meat without breaking the pandan leaf.

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Serve with some sriracha (or sriracha mayo) if you can take the extra heat, or with some coconut rice and some steamed asian vegetables if you’re all about balanced meals.

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