It was my second experience of going to some local authentic cooking classes. First one some time ago in Vietnam. And this one in Thailand was totally different and extremely amazing. It was so great that on the next day we took a second level in the same cooking school.
We started pretty early in the morning with a visit to a local market. It was a kind of introduction to the local products — galangal, finger ginger, all different kinds of basil, kaffir lime, tamarind and others. We bought everything we need for cooking and took tuk-tuks to the school.
The school itself is spread out in three different locations. And as we understood later we got into the newest and the most beautiful one. It was superb — great decoration, nice smell everywhere, cozy and friendly atmosphere. On arrival after washing hands we went to a separate room to prepare one of the main ingredients for many dishes — coconut cream, coconut milk and a tamarind paste.
The menu for the day included Tom Yam Goong, Pad Thai, Green Curry Paste, Green Curry Chicken, Laab Gai, Mango with Sticky rice. For each of the dishes we started with preparation of the ingredients. There were a special room were each of us had a separate space with a chopping board, a knife and a tray to arrange all components. After chopping all the stuff we went to an open-air space with separate wok for everybody for actually cooking the dish.
Green curry paste has been prepared altogether, just because cooking very small amount of paste does not make sense. Laab Gai and Mango Sticky Rice have been made by our teacher with detailed explanation of all steps. However they are pretty simple dishes and it saved some of our time. In general time-wise everything was arranged exceptionally. Keeping in mind that you are in Thailand it is especially unbelievable ;)
We were so much excited that took a second level of the course next day. It was similar by structure, just dishes were replaced to Tom Kha Gai, Pad See Ew, Spring Rolls, Red Curry Paste, Red Curry Chicken, Spring Rolls and Kluay Chuam. The biggest difference was that we were taken to other location — to the their oldest place. And it is pretty much different and not that much exciting like the previous. It is all clean and nice but not especial. Just keep this in mind if you’ll decide to go.
Anyway it was great and educational. Definitely recommended.