OK, so most people don’t like to think about cooking while they’re on vacation. I mean, it’s all about the easy, breezy relaxation, right? Right! But, learning how to cook Thai cuisine is a different story.
The Thai Cookery School in Chiang Mai, Thailand offers a 4 hour class which consists of a market visit, a small group cooking lesson and time to enjoy your creation and talk with the other students in the group. There are so many cooking schools, our sweet hosts at our bed and breakfast suggested this school, so we gladly accepted their opinion and suggestion.
Our lesson started with a late afternoon trip to the local market. We were the only “group” there. I say this to tell you that everyone else in the outdoor market was truly a local. There were some gringos strolling through, but I got the sense that this was a place set up just for tourists to come browse; this was a true, authentic, working market full of fresh produce, meats and spices from local merchants, farmers and fishermen. It was such an eye opening experience, so different from my weekly grocery trips here in The States.
Once we picked out the food (based on the dish we choose to make), we walked back to the outdoor kitchen and began slicing and dicing and chatting. Talking with the teacher and other students was just as fun as the preparation and the cooking.
No one in the class was a professional; we were all just arm chair chefs who love eating Thai so we decided to try our hand at cooking it. I made a chicken curry dish while Mike made his favorite chicken Pad Thai. We also both made sticky mango rice for dessert because it is just the bomb.
After cooking you actually get to sit down and enjoy your dish with other students. More talking and conversing around a meal, just like at home. Some things are just universal!