We scheduled a fun cooking class. Each class that we have taken has been unique. The Tom Yum Cooking School picked us up at the hostel, and we drove straight to the fresh market to handpick our ingredients. We were given a menu of choices for a main dish, soup, curry, and appetizer.
Here is Rob shopping with his stylish market basket.
This young lady is a university student majoring in English. She works for the cooking school. We went to the market with her. She showed us all kinds of produce.
These are prepackaged herbs that are needed when making Tom Yum. I love the idea of little fresh herb packages.
She told us to pick a dessert. I decided on this type of gelatin flower that is colored with the blue butterfly pea flower.
Tom Yum Cooking School
Our group was so much fun. We had Albert and Eva-Team Israel, Alo and Camille-Team France (and, yes, we were a little intimidated but they felt pressure as well) and us-Team USA.
The first order of business was to don proper cooking attire which included a head scarf (I am assuming for sweat), an apron and a cloth hanging out of the front pocket for wiping hands.
Each of us had our own prep station with wooden cutting boards and sharp knives. There was also a mortar and pestle when we needed to pound spices into a paste.
We learned one trick: when handling chili peppers use another herb to push them into your dish. This avoids a lot of contact with your skin. WARNING: Men must remember to wash their hands BEFORE going to the bathroom.
Once everything is prepped, we leave that area and go outside to a covered porch where we each have our own burner to use our woks.
Here I am making Amy’s favorite, Pad See Eiw under the watchful eye of Oun who has had his own school for seven years. They have a morning and afternoon session.
Rob got a picture of deep frying spring rolls. One slides them in on the sides and turns them when they are golden brown. After placing a spring roll on an absorbent towel, keep the tongs horizontal to prevent the oil from running onto your hand and causing burns.
We laughed and laughed. Oun could be a stand up comedian. He is the only Asian that I have seen with naturally curly hair.
Art in Paradise
A short walk from the cooking is a unique 3D illusion art museum. It is so much fun to take photos. They even have an App to turn them into movies but it only works on iPhones.
This illusion museum takes two dimensional art and through a variety of art elements, special techniques and professional skills transforms ordinary artworks into extraordinary three-dimensional interactive environments.
Here is Rob posing. He needs to tap into his acting skills. Nobody smiles this big when he is about to be eaten by a tiger.
Not quite. He looks like he is giving the shark a dental check-up prior to being eaten!!
Ok. Let me show you how it’s done. Catchin’ a curl.
Much better. To really sell it, he might want to remove his socks and even shirt.
Not my best pose but I couldn’t resist picking up these fallen sunflower petals.
Here is an example how this shot is done. Take the picture.
Then rotate it.
I have been reading a lot about Australia and hope that this next picture is not a harbinger of our travels in March.
Rob and his family bring a lot of art skills to our gene pool. Here he is touching up a few missed spots on the Mona Lisa.
He will always be my Man of the Year!
Chiang Mai Night Bazaar
I had to drag Rob out to a night market. It had been a long day, but it is our last night. This market was recommended even though it mostly caters to tourists. Since we are leaving Thailand, we didn’t have much money. It was window shopping: same, same but different.
These men are playing a game that look like an Asian fusion of Chess and Checkers.
This Babylonian Iraqi Restaurant was closed but it seemed interesting. We notice that all world travelers desire a taste of home after a while. We see tapas, Italian, Chinese, German Beer Houses, Japanese, etc.
Here is woman exercising on the sidewalk at the Night Bazaar. I don’t know if she is a worker on break or a tourist trying to rid herself of a few calories. Either way, I admired her spunk.
Watch her in action here:
Stewart Update: A picture is worth a thousand words.