I don’t cook. Basically ever. In fact, beyond boiling pasta and chopping things to put in said pasta (or on top of frozen pizza, all gluten free, of course) I do not think I have made a meal since we moved to San Diego a year and a half ago. When Logan goes out of town I stock up on frozen food from Trader Joes (kind of healthy, right?).
I mean I can cook. My parents made sure I was capable of feeding myself, but if I am being totally honest I am really just too lazy and I simply don’t care very much. Luckily for me I married someone who likes to cook. Scratch that. I married someone who loves to cook. Logan is creative and quick on his feet and, most importantly, uninterested in eating the same things over and over again. Give me a bowl of popcorn and some frozen dumplings (my typical meal when home alone senior year of high school) seven nights a week and I am good to go. But Logan likes “real” meals. With meat and veggies that did not come pre-packaged from our freezer.
Every year one of my resolutions is to start cooking at least a few meals a month, for fairness’ sake, but so far my follow-through on that goal has been essentially non-existent. But maybe this year will be the year because I arrived home from Thailand with some newfound cooking skills courtesy of Asia Scenic cooking school in Chiang Mai.
There are SO MANY cooking schools in Chiang Mai that basically cost the same, so I found the best way to chose one is to look at the menu in the brochure, which are all over town, and pick based on what you want to cook. I went with Asia Scenic because I really wanted to make spring rolls and khow soi curry, both of which are offered on their menu.
Our class had about ten students and an adorable Thai instructor who explained each step clearly and with humor.
First we went shopping in the market and learned about the ingredients we would be using in each of the dishes.
Then we headed back to the kitchen and chopped and stirred and mashed. And ate. Obviously.
I did a half-day class and we made four dishes: stir-fry, soup, spring rolls, and curry. Each person in the class gets to decide what exactly what they want to cook from a three or four options in each category. In this way we all got to make dishes catered to our individual tastes, but we learned how to make almost everything on the menu.
We each got to cook in our own woks so we were able to spice our dishes based on our individual spice tolerance. For me that is low. It was awesome to eat Thai food that was not too spicy for me.
Even if you have no cooking skills, taking a cooking class while traveling is a great (and delicious) way to learn more about the country you are visiting. I left feeling so proud of my new cooking skills and I can’t wait to go home and sit and watch Logan replicate what I learned! Kidding. Mostly.
Dollars and Sense
Half day cooking class- 800 baht
TIP: Go hungry so that you have room to eat all the delicious food you are cooking, but not too hungry because you may faint. Seriously. A girl in the class next to mine fainted while she was cooking. It was really, really scary. Fire + unconscious woman = no fun.