May Kaidee Cooking Class and HOPE

Thailand, Vegetarian   /  

Being and cooking with May Kaidee is a must-do for any vegetarian in Bangkok, a highlight of my trip for sure. This sweet Thai entrepreneur is also a tad spicy and fiercely talented.

Lisa recommended I try eating at May Kaidee’s on our trip; in preparation I’d added the website to “Favorites” and let it rest. http://www.maykaidee.com/

When Heather suggested cooking class our last day in Bangkok, I recalled the website and signed us up. In accordance with the rest of the synchronicity on our trip, cooking school ended up being walking distance from our current hotel, Lamphu Tree.
For about 40 USD we learned twelve Thai dishes, enjoyed a trip to the marketplace for proper ingredients, and shared a few laughs with our fellow classmates/travellers/chefs as we prepared a feast fit for kings.
Using the following ingredients we prepared all of our dishes, which were surprisingly simple to make (though complex in taste): Keffir lime leaves, Galangal (Thai ginger), chilies, peanuts, water, coconut milk, garlic, lemongrass, prepared Tofu, mushrooms, baby corn, broccoli, carrots, onions, tomatoes, vegetarian sausage, salt, pepper, cumin, curry, papaya, raw sugar, locally grown rice, coconut, sweet basil, cilantro, vegetable oil, mushroom sauce. light soy, dark soy and perhaps a few others.

My favorites included Massaman Curry, Pumpkin Hummus, Mango Coconut Sticky Rice, and a Ginger Tofu Stir-Fry.

In the midst of frying green chili paste for our green curry dish, a fellow student named Raj received a notification from his blackberry. “BREAKING NEWS: BARACK OBAMA ELECTED NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!” I nearly cried into the wok but instead cheered loudly amidst my fellow chefs, and people throughout the streets of Bangkok. Amidst broken English all afternoon, Thais and Caucasians alike looked at me with joy, often threw arms into the air, and exclaimed: “OBAMA!”

Worldwide, there is a shift. There is hope.

One thing that struck me throughout Thailand is the near royal worship. At every corner, in every home, and business, there is tribute to the king and queen. I wondered what it would be like to revere a leader so. Returning to the states (and enjoying a brief lay-over in San Francisco), I began to notice this HOPE poster everywhere. Perhaps our time is now.


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  1. jane jarecki /

    Peace to Thailand in the current unrest and to all the world.

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