Through My Eyes

Timing was everything.

The food tour of Thailand continues…

with one comment

This morning, Wendy and I woke up early to go to our Thai cooking class. Originally, Nate was to join us, however, when one goes out the previous night and meets a group of local university students who praise you if you can pound a full cup of Singha and challenge you to drinking “towers,” one might not feel well the next morning. Especially since one of the young students we befriended, Jay, took us dancing afterward at RCA district and to Sukhumvit’s Soi 38 where we all consumed the most delicious dishes of chicken and rice and bowls of BBQ pork noodle soups at 3 in the morning. I had Jay ask the vendor if he could give me a little of the spicy gravy to take with me and he ended up giving me a bagful that I now do not know what to do with. Are you allowed to take a bag of gravy through customs at the Bangkok airport? Guess we’ll find out tomorrow when we leave for Chiang Mai.

Our worldly young instructor met us at a Skytrain station, and we proceeded to pick up 5 other students, all of whom were from Austrailia, UK, and the States. He walked us over to a produce/meat/fish market in the Silom district and educated us about all of the ingredients we would be using today. We spent time sniffing and eye-ing everything as he threw various bunches of leaves, handfuls of mushrooms, bags of colorful dried chilies into our weaved baskets. Then, we walked over to where I assume he lives and were welcomed into a studio where small wooden tables were set up, along with a small prep area in the back and individual stove stations stood on the open air balcony. The class required us to clean and prep the fresh vegetables, grind the ingredients for curry paste, and actually cook (and eat immediately upon completion) 5 different dishes. They were: Chicken Galangal Coconut Soup (Tom Kha Gai), Chicken with Cashew Nut (Gai Phad Med Ma Muang), Spicy Mungbean Noodle Salad (Yam Woon Sen), Red Curry Chicken (Kaeng Phet Gai), and Fried Fish Cakes (Thod Mun Pla). After the first two entrees, Wendy and I hit a wall. Not only were we already full from the food, but I think lack of sleep from the previous night was catching up to us. Overall, each dish turned out incredibly flavorful and was a reminder that it just takes fresh and quality produce/ingredients to make a simple meal mind-blowing.

Our instructor leads a pretty rough life. He works just a few hours (9am-1pm) during each weekday instructing anywhere from 3-14 people (all paying approx. 1000 baht per lesson), meets people from all over the world who sign up to take his courses and are there wanting to learn, and travels every summer for three months out of the year. Wendy and I did the math after we left his apartment and decided that he is doing really well for a Thai native.

What was great was that he was a very engaging instructor, and it was a very interactive lesson in traditional Thai cooking. I felt like we definitely picked a great cooking course taught by an instructor who has a lot of knowledge to share, is not afraid to throw in sarcastic jokes at your expense, and genuinely enjoys what he does for a living. Out of 5 stars, I give it a 4.

Hope Nate goes later this week since he’s staying here for a few days after we leave.

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Written by winniewongsf

November 22, 2009 at 7:52 am

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. Superb site, where did you come up with the knowledge in this article? Im happy I found it though, ill be checking back soon to see what other articles you have.

    Sunny Strathy

    February 7, 2011 at 9:18 am


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