~ Baked Pandan Chicken (Kai Ho Bai Toei) ~
This Thai origin “Kai Ho Bai Toei” or Pandan Chicken dish appears to be a rather common one in most Thai restaurants. It is boneless chunks of chicken meat wrapped in pandan or screwpine leaves. I recall the first time I had this dish at an authentic Thai restaurant at Kuala Lumpur City Center. It is indeed a memorable dish complete with a Thai sweet chilli dipping sauce.
The challenging part in this dish falls on the wrapping of the chicken chunks in the thin strips of pandan leaves. I wrapped my chicken chunks like I was doing an Origami. If you are an Origami fan, this could be an easy task. Just have the end in mind, a pentagon shape made from folded strip of pandan leave. However challenging, that can be overcome with some practice and trust me it is fun at the same time! Just wrap 1 piece of marinated chicken into 1 strip of pandan leave at a time.
For a fully wrapped piece, form the pandan leave in the shape of a Pentagon, leave an opening to fill a chicken chunk. Insert chicken. Close the opening by inserting the end of a pandan leave into the opposite side of the fold. Trim the excess thicker end of the pandan leaves after it is securedly wrapped. Alternatively, for a fast and easy wraps, simply roll up a pandan leave with a chicken chunk in it and fasten the end of the leave with a sharp-end toothpick.
I baked instead of deep-frying these Pandan Chicken for a healthier version. I used my AMC collection of a rare 24cm 3.5 liter Pot unit with the Navigenio. A mere 15 minutes baked, the chicken chunks cooked through with pandan aroma, tender and juicy with much less fat. A real Thai pandan chicken recipe will have a longer list of ingredients. I have also simplified this recipe for easy preparation as a personal preference. It taste good regardless.
Baked Pandan Chicken Recipe (Yield 12 pieces) :
- 4 boneless Chicken Drumsticks (remove cartilage and veins for fussy eaters)
- 12 cleaned Pandan Leaves (with a few extra just in case!)
- 1 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 1 teaspoon Coriander Powder
- 1 teaspoon Soy Sauce
- 1 tablespoon Oyster Sauce
- A pinch of Sugar & Black Pepper (optional)
AMC Healthy Cooking Method :
- Cut chicken drumsticks into half (or more pieces for bigger drumsticks) and marinate with seasoning for 1 hour (or up to 4 hours in the chiller for more tasteful bites).
- Wrap marinated chicken chunks with pandan leaves in your desired way.
- Preheat AMC 24cm 3.5 liter Pot unit with Navigenio heat level “6” to 50°C or “Meat Window”. Use Audiotherm as an indicator by turning it on, place on lid knob, indicating 50°C or “Meat Window”.
- When Audiotherm beeps, turn off both Navigenio & Audiotherm. Remove lid and place pot unit on the up-turned lid. Arrange wrapped pandan chicken into the pre-heated pot.
- Cover pot unit with Navigenio turned upside down. Turn Navigenio on lower heat level “-“ to bake for 10 minutes and on higher heat level “=” to bake for 5 minutes.
- When Audiotherm beeps, turn off both Navigenio & Audiotherm.
- Serve warm with pandan leaves on.
Tips : Most if not all deep-frying recipes may be replaced with a fatless cooking method. The AMC Navigenio can be used for baking any of such day-to-day recipes, generally between 10 to 30 minutes, depending on volume. That is a much less energy consumption, contributing to a friendlier environment, as compared to a conventional oven. Needless to say, savings in our precious time and efforts too!