#sol17- Day 23/31- March 23, 2017
Several times while traveling I have taken a cooking course and I enjoy them as a way to learn more about local culture and cuisine, but also to meet fellow travelers.
Today I signed up to attend class at Bamboo Tree, a restaurant I had eaten at earlier in the week. There were 6 of us- a couple from Spain traveling indefinitely, a young man from Brazil, and a couple my age visiting from the UK. Our bonding experience was that we had to agree on the five dishes that we would cook for our meal.
We had many choices but with some compromises, we settled on: fried spring rolls, chicken in coconut milk soup, stuffed lemon grass, ginger fish, and banana and pineapple in coconut cream. Before we started cooking we went for a visit to a market (further outside town than the one I had explored on my own and much bigger).
While there I bought myself a bamboo basket and cover for steaming sticky rice (a long process I learned, as you have to soak the sticky rice for about 5 hours before steaming. The rice does not get cooked in water but is steamed over boiling water. I also bought two serving baskets to keep the rice from drying out. It remains to be seen if I will actually do all this work, but nice souvenirs.
We then returned to the restaurant to chop, slice, dice, and prepare our meal. The chef, Linda, was our instructor, and she taught us the basics of Lao cooking.
A few hours later as we ate our creations we were impressed with our efforts, but questioned what we would make on our own again, but I know that I have more chance, as the ingredients are easy for me to locate.
Aside from full tummies we got a cookbook and a certificate to take away to remind us of our attempt as Lao chefs. Another fun day in Luang Prabang.