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Whilst in Chiang Mai, Thailand Elysse, Irena, and I decided to do a Thai cooking class. We were picked up from our hotel and were taken to a local market along with three others participating in the class. We didn’t buy anything at the market, but we did get a tour and a course in the ingredients we would be using. I was amazed at how clean and ordered the market was! Meat was covered, the few flies were shoed, there was plenty of light, air, and space. I enjoy Cambodian markets, but I will never by meat from one. I would happily have bought meat from this Chiang Mai market. But maybe not this meat:

Oh, and when I say we didn’t buy anything at the market, that’s not essentially true, I did buy some crickets. They are really yummy!

The cooking class took place at a farm about 20 to 30 minutes out of town. We each had our own cooking station. Here’s Irena and Elysse at their stations with our teacher:

My cooking station:

There were three options for each course, which worked well as there were three of us. The first item on the menu was the curry paste. Irena chose green, Elysse chose red, and I went with yellow.

Yellow Curry Paste (serves 1 – 2)

Ingredients:

-3 red dried chillies (soak in cold water about 15 minutes before pounding)
-1 tbsp. chopped shallots
-1 tsp. chopped galangal
-1 tbsp. chopped lemongrass
-2 cloves chopped garlic
-1/4 tsp. roasted cumin seeds
-1/4 tsp. roasted coriander seeds
-1 tsp. chopped turmeric
-1 tsp. yellow curry powder
-1 tsp. chopped ginger

Preparation:

Throw everything in a mortar and get out all that excess tension with the pestle until everything is mixed.

And then you have a wonderful fragrant and colourful curry paste.

Variations:

For red curry paste add 1/2 tsp. chopped kaffir lime rind, 1 tbsp. chopped krachai (Thai ginseng), and 1/4 tsp. salt. Omit the turmeric, yellow curry powder, and ginger.

For green curry paste add 2 – 3 long green chillies, 1/2 tsp. chopped kaffir lime rind, 1 tbsp. chopped krachai (Thai ginseng), and 1/4 tsp salt. Omit the dried red chillies, turmeric, yellow curry powder, and ginger.

More recipes to come!

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