My name’s Petz Patiyut. I use couchsurfing and other host networks to travel the world. I always cook for hosts when I travel abroad. Unfortunately, when I am in Thailand, I don’t often get the chance to cook . I miss cooking so much!
For those of you who haven’t been to Thailand, you might not know; that to cook in Thailand sometimes cost more than to eat in normal restaurants.
It is weird huh? But it is true. Read some facts about Thailand before you come.
That is the reason why most Thais don’t cook at all.
So I am organizing a freestyle cooking group with my foreigner friends who lives long term in Thailand. Basically, I wish to start this group because I want to cook when I am in Thailand and to cook with people is even better as they say “an experienced shared is an experience doubled!” Here are the details of our group:
What is a freestyle cooking group?
- We are a group of people who love to cook or want to learn how to cook.
- We are not teachers. This is not a cooking class. But we do love to share our cooking experiences.
- We have a variety of cooking styles. I (Petz) love to cook Thai food. Sam dabbles in English and other international cooking styles she has picked up on her travels. So, we could also cook some international dishes or really go crazy and try some East meets West fusion dishes!
What would we do?
- We will organize a cooking event once a week. That is our plan. We would go to shop at a Thai fresh market or at a supermarket depending on which place we could get the best value of ingredients. We would do and learn together. Petz is the main organizer. He is Thai and can speak English well.
- Each time we would set the main dishes.
On our upcoming event, 22nd August, we plan to cook a Thai chicken green curry, a Thai pork omelet and a sweet and sour stir fried vegetable with seafood for the part of Thai cooking. We might add more menus depending on how many people will join. We can confirm this as a group when we meet up before going to shop for ingredients.
When is this event?
- This event will be launched on Friday 22nd August 2014. Then, we would try to make it once a week, mostly on weekdays. But we will see how it goes for the first time. I will keep you posted on any upcoming events on the website.
What time do you have to meet and until what time do we have to leave?
- We would cook dishes for afternoon meal. But we have to meet earlier to go shopping for ingredients together. So let’s meet at 14.00 am. But the time we leave will depend on the host who lets us use their kitchen. For the current host Sam we can eat and chill up till 5pm.
Where do we have to meet?
- There is no specific place for this event. But I will try to organize it near the BTS areas which is super easy and convenient to travel.
-Our first event will be held at Sam’s kitchen in Thonglor area. Let’s meet at exit No. 3 of Thonglor BTS station at 14.00 pm sharp. If you come late, you have to catch up with us later!
How to join?
-First off, we would like to start with a small number of people, so that we can learn and solve any problems that might arise for the next event. Ideally we would like to start with five people and hopefully as the event grows in popularity we can seek out a larger venue in line with the group size.
- We plan to make the dishes in the way you would at home. So everyone is welcome to join and help in each process. You might be responsible for slicing tomatoes or chopping some meat. But there would be only one person who will take responsible for all of the dishes and contribute or distribute each part of the cooking process to the rest.
I f you would like to join our cooking group we would appreciate it if you could share the cost of the ingredients. I think it would be about 100 Baht per person and you could eat as much as we cook!
- Please email me : firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and tell me the following information ;
- How experienced are you in cooking? What are your cooking styles?
- What are your expectations from this event?
- Do you have any food intolerance’s or do not eat a certain type of food?
Then I will confirm with you whether you can join. If there are over 5 people, then unfortunately I will have to decline some people . But we will put together a waiting list, depending on the events popularity so everyone has the opportunity to take part.
Please bear with us as we are just starting out, it’s very much a learning curve at the moment! We are both passionate about making this work and will work hard to flourish this freestyle cooking idea into fruition, we would really love to welcome all of you with no exception. But it may take some time to reach that point.
What do you have to bring with?
- We organize everything for you so…..as a matter of fact, you don’t have to bring anything at all just yourselves and the passion or curiosity of cooking.
- Maybe a cook book if you have it.
- Minimum 100 Baht per person donation to cover the cost of the ingredients.
- We all have a duty to clean the kitchen and everything we use after we finish cooking.
Please check my website as I will post an update each week with the cooking details. After we finish the cooking event, I will post the recipes we tried and photo’s of our cooking session.
If there are many people joining and the money we collect is over the cost of our ingredients. I will share the credit between the host to cover any additional costs such as store cupboard ingredients and electricity and the staff who organise the event. Any additional donations will be received with thanks and will be put towards the goal of procuring a larger kitchen so we can make this freestyle cooking experience available to all fellow foodies!
Read some more detail : www.lovelyplanetz.com
More question : firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
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I was born in Hong Kong during the year of the pig which is a huge clue about my eating habits! Sadly, I remember very little about my life in Hong Kong as I moved to England at the age of 4 years old, I’m frequently referred to as the fake Asian amongst my friends!
From my formative years onwards my life has been orientated around food, as soon as I was old enough to cook on gas and escape the dreary monotony of English meat and three over boiled vegetables (sorry mum!). I revelled in seeking out my own gastronomic adventures. I studied for a degree in food science and technology, I started my own bakery business selling to local cafes and in my first ever graduate job I embodied the real life Willy Wonker, working in a biscuit factory, which was famous for creating the first dunk-able biscuits. I then turned my insatiable aspirations to work in a ready meal factory, creating international chilled ready meals, from fetching faggots to exotic Thai curries.
My love for international tastes grew as inevitably did my waistline. To satisfy this craving to learn more about food, I sought to seek out authentic culinary adventures of my own. So in September 2011 my boyfriend and I packed our 30 litre backpacks. Chris with his practicable travel essentials and me with several pairs of shoes too many and some trusty beef oxo cubes….. in the hope I could seize the opportunity to try out new recipes and old home comforts.
We embarked upon our globavore adventure around South East Asia, visiting some amazing countries and tasting the weird to the wonderful, in what was supposed to be only1 year of travelling, turned into an infinite adventure and we continue to travel to this day using Bangkok as a base.
I’ve since been looking for opportunities to turn my passions into something tangible, with the goal to work with like minded people to start a food collective, recently I was lucky enough to meet such a guy, who has boundless enthusiasm and devotion to food and travel.
I met Petz at a language exchange meetup in Bangkok, we discovered we both had shared interests and we talked fervently about our globavore lifestyle and when Petz first mentioned his idea of setting up a freestyle cooking event I was thrilled especially having had similar ideas in the past.
We both loved the idea of a cooking collective, bringing like minded foodies together to celebrate food, both local and foreign alike. Our goal was to create this experience in a relaxed environment that wasn’t going to break the bank. So here’s our collaborative story of launching the free style cooking event.
Trial run of free style cooking
Petz’s plan was to make two dishes:
1) Moo- sab pad graprow/ Thai stir fried minced pork with holy basil
(moo translated means pork. Sab, mince. Pad, fried and graprow, holy basil. )
2) Kai jiew moo-sub/ Thai minced pork omelette
(Kai Jiew translated means egg omelette. Moo, pork and sab, mince)
We visited the local fresh market located at Thonglor canal and shopped for the following fresh produce:
A packet of small bright red chilli’s (20thb). This equates to about 40 chilli’s per 100grams, the smaller chilli the hotter so these were not to be chowed down like popcorn at a cinema; unless of course you want a real a tear jerker!
The most popular and also the smallest of the chillies used in thai cooking is called prik kee noo and this literally translates to “mouse shit chillies” the reason being you never usually know there is a mouse, until you see their shit. These chillies, in Thai food are the same, you can’t see them but once try, you definitely know they have been there! And I believe that these were the little chilli’s that we bought at the market.
A few leafy sprigs of fragrant holy basil (4thb) I only recently discovered the difference between sweet basil and holy basil, and had previously only bought the sweet basil variety for it’s liquorice notes. The holy basil variety, with its lightly hairy leaves, jagged along the edges imparts a mild zesty, peppery and spicy flavour, which becomes more pronounced in cooking.
The Thai varieties of Basil are unique in flavour but European basil can be used as a substitute if you cannot find the Thai varieties
Thai fish sauce, 300ml, Tiparosm brand (20thb). There is no English on the bottle so here’s a photo of the label so you can identify it clearly.
Fish sauce is the single, most important flavoring in Thai cooking, in Western cooking it can be likened to the use of salt.
The Tiparos brand of fish sauce is the choice brand to use, it has a street appeal, being the familiar fish sauce served throughout Thailand as an everyday pedestrian favorite. It has a premium quality, familiar taste, and the best value price.
Most large supermarkets in Europe will sell fish sauce in their ethnic aisles, if you can’t find it; then Worcestershire sauce can be used as a replacement, however, please use this carefully, its flavor is very strong exhibiting a more prominent sourness to it.
We started with making the Thai minced pork omelet so we could reuse the same pan straight after for the next dish; I’m all for efficiency and doing as little washing up as possible!
The method to for both recipes has been adapted so they can be cooked on electric hobs, however it is preferable to use a wok and cook on gas at a high temperature to achieve a crispier texture to the omelet.
Kai jiew moo-sub. Thai minced pork omelet
Description: This is a Thai street food classic, it is quite distinctively different from a normal western style omelet as it’s more of a deep fried omelette, if you have your oil at the right temperature you can achieve a crispy golden yellow exterior and a fluffy inside that shouldn’t be too oily. The seasoned flavour comes from the Thai fish sauce which imparts moreish salt and sweet notes to the omelette.
Time: About ten minutes
Utensils: Small mixing bowl, frying pan, spatula, fork, table spoon
Portion size: two people
1 tablespoon of fish sauce
250 grams of ground minced pork
2 tablespoons of rice bran oil or vegetable oil
Crack open the eggs and whisk them together until even in colour.
Add 1 tablespoon of fish sauce , mix.
Break up the minced pork into small even lumps as you add it to the egg mixture, mix.
Heat the frying pan with the oil on high.
When the oil is hot enough pour in the egg mixture and turn the temperature down to low, the residual heat of the pan on the hob will cook the omelette more gently.
When the colour is light golden brown on the underside of the omelette then flip it over and cook the other side until light golden brown and cooked through to the the middle, you may need to apply the heat again.
• If you would like to jazz it up, add some chopped onion and tomato into the raw egg mixture before cooking.
• Garnish with a few sprigs of sweet basil or coriander
^__^ Petz top tip: To know if the oil is hot enough for cooking, drop a tiny bit of the egg mixture in to the hot oil and if it fizzes with the heat then it’s ready!
Moo-sab pad graprow/ Thai stir fried minced pork with holy basil
Description: This dish is a serious contender for the most popular and beloved Thai street food dish. It’s safe option for many Thai’s when they don’t know what to order, it’s almost always available at street food stalls and restaurants and it’s packed full to bursting with flavor. Its taste is salty, spicy, fragrant from the garlic, aromatic from the holy basil and doused pleasantly in wok hie.
Time: About ten minutes
Utensils: Chopping board, vegetable knife, frying pan, spatula, table spoon
4 garlic cloves peeled
250g Minced pork
4 leafy sprigs of holy basil
Whole Chillies to taste
1 – 2 Tablespoons of fish Sauce
2 Tablespoons of rice bran oil or vegetable oil
Roughly chop the garlic.
Strip the leaves from holy basil from the stalk.
Heat the oil in a frying pan on a high heat.
When it’s hot enough add the garlic mix, keep on moving it round the pan to prevent it from burning, when the garlic turns a golden brown colour add the chilli’s, stir briefly.
Break up the minced pork into small even lumps as you add to the pan.
Add the fish sauce and cook through.
When the mince pork is cooked toss in the holy basil leaves, turn off the heat and mix until the basil has wilted.
• If you would like to enrich and make more saucy, add a table spoon of oyster sauce and dark sweet soya sauce.
• The pork can be substituted for chicken, beef and seafood.
• Garnish with a few sprigs of sweet basil or coriander.
• Moo-sab pad graprow is normally served on top of a pile of steamed jasmine with a fried egg on the side.
T^__^ Petz top top tips:
The larger dark core within the clove is the older the older the garlic.
If the garlic looks like it’s going to burn add a dash of water.
These dishes were not only a feast for the eyes but absolutely delicious, they’re surprisingly incredibly quick and easy to cook. So go on, try these at home and tantalize your Thai taste buds!
If you would like to participate in our inaugural weekly free style cooking event, starting on the 22nd August, or would like to find out more information, please drop us an email at:
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com