Monday, September 13, 2010

Koh Samui Thai Cooking Class - Siam Kitchen

Siam Kitchen's Thai cooking class is a must-do in Koh Samui, if you enjoy cooking, good food, and want to get a taste of Thai culture.

Koh Samui is not the most exciting or romantic travel destination in Thailand.  For shopping I'd go for Bangkok, for culture Chiangmai, for sun and beach Phuket, for tranquility Koh Lanta, etc.  My short Koh Samui trip wouldn't have been half as interesting if I hadn't spent 3 hours at Siam Kitchen, learning Thai cooking from Sont, the instructor and founder of this local cooking "school".

The class starts with Sont taking you to the local farmer market to show you typical ingredients used in Thai cooking and how to pick the freshest herbs, seafood, meat, fruits, vegetables.....

You will then be taken back to Sont's kitchen where he'll brief you on the principles of Thai cooking.

Before cooking each dish, he will give you a quick briefing.  Then you are expected to start cooking the dish following his instructions.  Sounds easy - but the cooking time is usually within 10 minutes, so everything happens very quickly!  Add in three-quarters tablespoon of vinegar now!  Half a teaspoon of sugar!  Taste it!  Is it sour enough?  Is it sweet enough!  Adjust the taste so the sweetness doesn't cover the sourness!  Keep tasting!  ........

It was really exciting, like being on a reality cooking show, in a cooking contest!   The dishes turned out perfect, better than any Thai food I had had in any Thai restaurants.  I really enjoyed the class and felt like I learned a lot from Sont.

The dishes I cooked were:
Laab Gai, Moo/ Spicy minced chicken or pork
Thom Khaa Gai/ Coconut milk soup with chicken
Phad Thai/ Stir-fried rice noodle”Thai”style
Gaeng Kiew Waahn Gai/ Green curry with chicken

After each dish, you'd have time to enjoy the food at a table on the pavement.  It was quite a special, local and authentic way to enjoy such authentic Thai food - Sont teaches only authentic Thai dishes cooked the traditional way, so nothing Americanized or internationalized!
Don't forget to book in advance.   Go to the website and email Sont to arrange directly.


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