I opted for the evening class- which means you get picked up at about 4pm and I got back to the hostel after 10pm! For other fellow solo travellers- this is a great way to meet people as well as learn new skills whilst travelling.
After picking up a few others we made our way to a local market. The teacher taught us about different types of rice, and thenwe were able to walk around the market. Personally, i didn’t love this bit purely because I had already seen so many markets!
Then we got back in the cars and made a short journey to the Mama Noi cookery school. I have no idea why it was called Siam Rice on Trip Advisor, yet Mama Noi when we got there…but when you’re in Thailand you learn not to ask too many questions and just roll with it!! Either way- they get a full 10/10 from me!
When we got to the school we were given aprons and hats and we went onto their farm to learn about local herbs and vegetables that they grow themselves. The school and farm is so pretty and clean!
We saw and played with pigs, chickens and also saw how they farm their mushrooms.
After this we went back into the classroom (which is covered by a roof but outdoors!) and we chose our dishes. The teachers spoke perfect English, and had great senses of humour.
First lesson: Thai people love their spice… Even more than Indians so be careful!! They kept asking how sexy we each were- and that measured our level of spice. Its maybe the only time you’ll want to say you’re only a little bit sexy!
They were so accommodating for me as a vegetarian! I could make any dish I wanted as a veggie dish- and they even made sure I was never given fish oil or cutlery thats been used with fish oil/meats.
I made sum delicious Tomyum soup and Pad Thai noodles to begin with. I had gone a bit heavy on the spice- but that helped with any sinuses I had going on!! We sat to eat these dishes before going on to main course…
Having made some Thai curries previously I went for the local Chiang Mai noodle dish as my main course. But its great because you get to watch all the curry pastes being made-so you learn a bit about everything. You also have your own gas cooker when its time to make the dishes.
I used to run my own baking & cake decorating classes so I’m quite picky on hygiene, teacher skill & knowledge etc. I have to say- this really exceeded all expectations and truly was the best cooking class I have ever attended!! We also had 2 young kids in the group and they really adapted the lesson well for them. Keeping kids entertained for 5/6 hours is hard- but these guys made it look easy!
After working hard with the pestle and mortar and then cooking our curries by our cookers we then sat down for main course. You can drink free filtered water, or wash your curries down with soft drinks and/or beer that you can purchase very cheaply.
No One is trying to upsell you stuff, or rip you off!
At the end of the class you get a free dessert (even though you’re already stuffed!) and a cute Thai bag which contains the Mama Noi recipe book for you to take home! You get all the recipes of every dish and the book has all the information on herbs, spices, vegetables etc!
Now that I have this amazing recipe book I have no real reason to go back here… But if I visit Chiang Mai again I would still go do this all over again! Thank you so much for a great time!!!
If you have any questions about the cookery class or travel in Chiang Mai just comment on the below and I’ll do my best to help you out!