Day 10 – Chiang Mai, Thailand

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I just finished taking my first Thai cooking class, and it was awesome! I got picked up from my hotel by the school, then we headed to the local market to pick up and learn about different ingredients that we would be using later in the day. When we arrived at Thai Farm Cooking School, we toured around the farm and learned about the different vegetables and fruits that they grow organically. Our guide, Garnet, was very knowledgeable and extremely funny. She had a beautiful smile and contagious energy that did not extinguish throughout the entire day. Non-disclaimer: Yes, I did in fact cook and plate every single dish you see here, aside from the papaya salad. Sometimes I even amaze myself.

Our first dish was a Coconut Milk soup with chicken, made from scratch with many ingredients fresh from the garden. This cooking school takes “farm to table” to the next level. The soup was probably my favorite dish of the entire day! Sweet, sour, spicy. A symphony of flavors all in one bowl! After our soup, we prepared our curry pastes, smashing the spices in a mortar with a pestle. We made our own Thai spring rolls and Thai sweet chili dipping sauce (YUM!). Then we had the traditional papaya salad with fruits from the garden. After our snacks, we went back to the kitchen to prepare our curries and chicken with cashew stir-fry. Fires ablaze!

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Our fun, energetic and extremely knowledgeable cooking instructor, Garnet!
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Mango sticky rice with blue rice from butterfly pea flower

We stuffed ourselves to the brim, leaving only enough room for dessert. Garnet showed us how to make a special mango sticky rice, boiling coconut milk, pandan leaves, and butterfly pea flowers to create a beautiful blue color. At the end of the class, she gave us each our own cookbooks with today’s recipes and personalized each one with our names written in the Thai alphabet!

The entire day was spent learning about traditional Thai flavors and how to use different ingredients. This school was a little bit on the expensive side but was definitely worth every penny! The kitchen staff was so helpful and attentive, taking care of all of our dishes and prepping our stations for the next dish. The menu and order of dishes is so well-thought-out giving the class small breaks in between to digest and meet each other. My group of ten was filled with travelers, mostly from the US and HK. We shared many laughs throughout the day. I am so excited to bring home my new knowledge for Thai cuisine and start recreating the dishes in my own kitchen!

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