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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Pandan flavor extract

Something a kitchen should have #1 : pandan flavor extract

Pandan leaves are used widely in Southeast Asian cooking. They have a nutty, botanical fragrance which enhances the flavor of foods. Pandan leaves are from the Pandanus amaryllifolius of the screwpine family. The aromatic scent is of 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, which also give jasmine rice and bread flower ( Vallaris glabra ) their smell.

Pandan is so important in SE Asian cuisine, that it can be found in every village and sub-urban. Propagation is very easy, a cutting properly watered and fertilized will grow into a huge bush.

However, pandan leaves are sometime not as easily available as it should be. And sometime even though I put a generous bunch of pandan leaves into my tong sui 糖水, there are hardly any fragrant out of it ! Lagipun, getting fresh pandan leaves is especially difficult when work long hours and hardly finds time to go to market.

This is when I find a little bottle of pandan extract is most useful and convenience. It comes in small bottle e.g. 25ml, in various brands. A little drop of it is suffice to flavor a big pot of tong sui. Magic potion it is !

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