Eating is my favorite. It is. It inspires me everyday to remove myself from the bed I so adore and venture out into the world in search of anything that will quench my burning desire for food. Its that serious, ask Nicole. Since we left the states a year and a half ago that desire and burn has grown to include a vast array of ethnic food. It has bee a bit of a struggle doing without Kimchi since our departure from Korea, but southeast Asian cuisine has done quite nicely in filling the void. Thai food in particular had been a fan fav of the two of us and after we left Thailand for Vietnam, we had both been fairly excited about our return to Thai cuisine in Chiangmai.
On monday we decided to educate ourselves on the mastery of Thai cookin by signing up for an all day cooking class to broaden our culinary scope and hopefully retain enough to share the joy of Thai food with the folks back home come November.
The school, “Smart Cook” in Chiangmai is one of 5 in the city but we lucked out as the only two students in the class on this particular day.
Our instructor picked us up and started the day by taking us through the local market to run us through the ingredients necessary to create our dishes. After that we hiked over to the school and began the course.
Fortunately, we were given extremely sexy and flattering aprons which was a major confidence boost for me entering the kitchen. Beginning with the appetizer soups, Nicole and I sliced and diced some veggies and then boiled it all together to create what really was an amazingly flavorful soup. And honestly, i think soups are lame and without substance but with the coconut milk and lemongrass, I had no choice but to give in and accept that it was in fact, awesome.
Next we cooked up some entrees. Nicole worked on the more complicated Pad Thai while I made a dish of chicken and roasted cashews. Following the entrees we started in on smashing up the ingredients that would be added to our curry mix. This was a sweaty ordeal that we were told many locals now use a blender to create. We however found no challenge in that and so we smashed like hooligans for about 10 minutes until the paste was formed.
Before the curry was made we both made some spring rolls and salads. Mine were more of a desert fried banana roll that would be served with a condensed milk dipping sauce to give it a sweet kick. Nicoles fresh veggie rolls were coupled with a pretty delicious apple cinnamon sauce.
Finally we went to the woks and put the finishing touches on the curry. We also made with the curry our desserts. Nicole made sweet pumpkin and coconut milk while I crafted a nice team of sweet sticky rice and fresh mangos.
The food was all really amazing and even moreso was the opportunity to learn from a local the art of creating it. Its very easy for us to eat the food at the local restaurants, but with this experience we gained a deeper appreciation for the work that goes into making the dishes. We parted with some cookbooks that we hope to use frequently….well, when we have a kitchen, or a home.
Thanks for reading my friends,