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Cooking with Andrew and Courtney

Winter Vacation 2008/2009

sunny 30 °C
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Today was our Thai cooking course. Before we arrived we booked a course with the Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School. It was the first cooking school set up in Chiang Mai and has an outstanding reputation. By the end of the day, we agreed.

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We met at the cooking school at 10 am. There were 16 people in our session. Thankfully the cooking school is set up to handle lots of students and we each had our own work station.

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They divided us into two groups, and we were then shuttled off to the local market for our introduction to traditional Thai ingredient. Our teacher/guide took us around and showed us the different types of herbs, roots, and rice that are used in Thai cooking. Here are some shots of food Court took at the market.

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After we got back from the market we went into the demonstration room where the teachers showed us how to make the dishes. Once she went through making the food we went back to our workstations and tried to make it ourselves then we’d sit down and eat. Then repeat the process for all 6 dishes.
The first dish we made was tom kha gai, or chicken in coconut milk soup. It tasted excellent and everyone was amazed at how easy it was make.

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The second dish we made was raad nah muu , fried thick noodles with thick sauce and pork. There was a thick sauce on the noodles that tasted like a mixture of molasses and soy sauce. This was our favorite dish of the day.

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The third and fourth dishes we made were ( Gaeng Phed Plaa , red curry and fish and, phad hed ruam khao pod om, fried mixed mushrooms with baby corn. We ate these two dishes together for lunch. Not that we were really hungry after the first two dishes, but they still tasted very nice.

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The fifth dish we made was khanom kluay, steamed banana cake. It had to be steamed and it was dessert, so we ate it last. This was a very sweet dessert that was relatively easy to make. The consistency as similar to uncooked muffin batter, but still tasted great. It was also a good counter taste to the spice from earlier in the day.

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While waiting for our banana cakes to steam, we prepared our sixth dish, som tam, or green papaya salad. For this dish you had to crush garlic and birds-eye chilies using a mortar and pestle. The more you crush the chili, the spicier your salad gets. I thought I wasn’t crushing the chili pepper too much but then when we got to eating, it turned out I crushed it too much. The salad was a lot spicier than it should have been. Oh well. Next time. It still tasted good. We also forgot to take a picture of this. Epic fail.

We finished up the cooking course around 3:15. And we all went on our way. There was an Australian family of three that are heading to Laos tomorrow, we are heading there on Monday, so we won’t be surprised if we see them there.

We had some sunlight left and a nice blue sky, it was time to go look at some more ats , temples. These wats are usually a whole temple complex not just the temple. Most of them have a main temple area, living quarters for the monks, chedis and other structures depending on the location.

There were a few in the old town area that we hadn’t seen yet and set out in that direction. We got to the first temple complex and I realized I was wearing shorts. It is extremely rude to wear shorts into a temple. I had to run back to the hotel and put on my pants then hustle back to meet up with Courtney. We went to three different wats this afternoon.

The first wat we went to was Wat Phan Tao.

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The second wat we went to was Wat Chediluang Varaviharn. In this complex there was an enormous chedi that was slowly and painstakingly being rebuilt.

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The last wat we went to was Wat Phra Singh. We didn’t stick around here too long. We had to go for our second fitting at the tailors and, more pressingly, find a bathroom for Courtney.

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After this we made our way back to the tailor tried our clothes on again. They fit better this time. We also strolled through the night market and ate some Greek food for dinner. We were handed a flier for but decided to skip out on the Thai Ladyboy Beauty Contest tonight. Now we are back at the hotel getting ready for bed and another busy day tomorrow.

Posted by agc_cwm 21:29 Archived in Thailand

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