I finally did it- made the pandan paste and baked a Pandan Chiffon Cake.
Ever since I had some success in baking chiffon cakes, I had wanted to bake a Pandan flavour one. But I was too "kiasu" and don't want to waste my money to get the pandan leaves from the market when there were plenty of these available for free around our houses. Sadly, the pandan plants around my house does not belong to me and moreover so many people have been "stealing" them that they are like miniature plants now struggling to grow bigger!
I had meanwhile planted 1 in front of my house and hopefully it will flourish well. So when I dropped my sister-in-law house and saw those BIG pandan leaves outside her house, I just cannot stop myself, dragging home more than I need.
I only need about 10-12 pandan leaves to make this wonderful aromatic pandan paste.
Wash and snip the leaves into smaller pieces. Blend them with some water and strain them into a bottle. Keep the bottle overnight (I kept it for almost a week). you can see the thick residue at the bottom of the bottle. Drain away the clear water and use only the paste.
This was the first attempt. Why was it a different shade? Well, my itchy hands added a drop of green food gel to the mixture as I was not really liking the muted natural shade of green- like Chinese say "duck poo green" (pardon the direct translation). As a result, I got this jade green colour but ops! the batter deflated as a result of the mixing and here is a only 2" inches tall cake.
The 2nd attempt yielded a much taller and airy cake but as you can see the colour may not be all together look appetising. However I was consoled by the fact that both cakes were light and soft and the pandan flavour was unmistakenly still there after baking. By the way the house smelled wonderful as they were baking.
The rest of the unused pandan leaves were tied into small bundles and left around the toilet and in the car as well as to naturally perfume the air with its uplifting fragance!