Monday, October 26, 2020

Xoi La Dua - Pandan Flavored Vietnamese Sticky Rice

Xoi la dua is Vietnamese style sticky  rice flavored with coconut and pandan leaves. Myself and my daughter are so much addicted to Thai sticky coconut rice (with or without mangoes). So, often we try different south-east Asian sticky rice. In Vietnam, the sticky rice is made in different colors with natural ingredients that add color to the food. It is a feast to the sight to see a tray filled with different colored rice. It is a popular snack, or a meal. It is a typical breakfast. Vietnamese style of coconut rice is not so sweet - mean to say - not like dessert sweetness. The sweetness comes mostly from the topping and the rice is not loaded with sugar. So it is easier to adjust the sweetness according to your preferences. You can add generous amounts of the toppings too. The topping is usually made with toasted sesame seeds, coconut, and a little sugar. Love that combo. In our tradition, we make sesame balls, peanut ball, coconut, rice (sweet as well as savory version). All these ingredients are used in Vietnamese sticky rice and it is a win-win situation for me. Not so sweet, just the perfect sweetness for me. I like to have this any time of the day. It is pure heaven for me. But feel free to sprinkle extra sugar and make it a dessert, if you have a very sweet tooth. 

I have tried a few versions of the Vietnamese sticky rice, but tried with pandan this time. Fresh pandan imparts a lot of flavor and aroma. I didn't want to venture out much in this COVID situation to look for fresh or frozen pandan leaves. Different reviews for the extract resulted in confusion. So, ordered dried pandan leaf powder in amazon. I guess drying diminishes the aroma/flavor a little bit. So had to increase the pandan powder in the subsequent experiments. The powder gave a natural green hue to the rice. It turned out to be a great recipe. Soaking the rice is important for better steam cooking  of the rice. I always use my multi-purpose pan to steam the rice. Any kind of steamer can be used. 

This is my post for the Blogging Marathon #117 - Must Try International Recipes. Check here for information about what fellow Blogging Marathoners are doing.



Short grain sticky rice - 1/2 cup
Water - 1 cup
Coconut milk - 2 tbsp
Sugar -1 tsp
Salt -1/8 tsp
Grated coconut - 1 tbsp
Pandan powder - 1 tsp


Peanut - 1 tbsp, toasted
Sesame seeds - 2 tbsp, toasted
Salt - 1/8 tsp
Sugar - 1 tbsp
Coconut - 1 tbsp, for garnish, optional


Wash the rice a couple of times and soak  for at least 8 hrs. in 1 cup water. Drain the water and rinse. Pour water in the steamer and bring to a boil. To the rice add salt, pandan powder, and mix well. 

Grease if using metal plate for steaming. Spread the rice evenly, cover and steam for 15 min. 

In the meantime, pulse the sesame seed and peanut in spice grinder just to crush it. Transfer to a bowl. Add salt, sugar and mix. Keep it aside.

Sprinkle coconut milk, sugar, grated fresh coconut. Mix gently with chopsticks, like kind of fluffing it. Steam for another 15 min. 

Transfer to serving bowls, top with coconut, sesame seed - peanut mixture according to your taste.


  1. I haven't used the pandan yet and know it is widely used as a flavoring agent in many Asian countries. I am sure this rice dish must be a flavor loaded one.

  2. This is surely interesting dish to try. You have got an excellent one for x, you must have saved it..hehehe..:)

  3. I am yet to try pandan, we don't find it here except in specialty stores, and yesterday while grocery shopping, the essence stared at my face to pick up... hehe... That sticky rice looks really delicious and interesting...

  4. Very interesting sticky rice. My family is not a great fan of sticky rice and so have not ventured into that area. But the pandan flavor sounds very interesting

  5. I have heard about pandan but never used it. Brilliant idea to use the powder instead of fresh leaves. In these tuf times we need to work with what we have. That's one unique recipe and perfect pick for letter X

  6. wow! this sounds so flavour ful! i am sure it tasted great too