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Pandan Leaves


Pandan Leaves &  Paste

Pandan Leaves (purchased frozen) and Pandan Paste

Definition: Pandan (screwpine pandanus) is a type of plant that grows in tropical areas of Asia. Pandan leaves have a sweet, unique flavor that is commmonly used in Southeast-Asian countries to enhance both desserts and savory dishes. The leaves are long and bright green, and when pounded or ground, they lend a sweet taste and aroma to many Thai desserts and some drinks.

Where to Buy Pandan: Pandan leaves can be purchased at your local Asian food store, and may be bought fresh or, more likely, frozen (the ones shown in the photo were purchased frozen). Pandan also comes in a ready-to-use paste - you can find it at most Asian food stores (see picture). One bottle lasts a long time, as the paste is highly concentrated.

How to Use Pandan Leaves: To create a paste out of pandan leaves which you can then use for a variety of recipes, cut leaves into 1-inch pieces and place in a pot on the stove together with 1/2 cup water (put as many pieces in as will fit). Boil until leaves are soft (some of the water will evaporate), then process water and leaves together in a food processor to create a paste.

Another Use of Pandan Leaves: Place several leaves on top of each other and tie in a knot to hold them together. Add this to a rice pot to add a subtle pandan flavor to your rice.

Pandan has a very special taste that marries beautifully with coconut milk - there's nothing quite like it!

Try my Pandan Recipes!

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