Thai cuisine is sort of an acquired taste. You either like it or hate it. However, the beauty of Thai food is that you like it more with frequent exposure. It will start with you taking more bites of a previous ‘hate’ than usual and next thing you know, the food you have despised at first has grown on you. People get hooked on Thai flavors in that manner, little by little until they are totally into the cuisine. Cooking Thai food is not that easy or that difficult. It is somewhere in between. The local dishes possess a varying degree of difficulty. Some are quick and basic, others are painstakingly hard—particularly those that are curry based. A good holiday activity is taking up Thai cooking lessons. This is the best way to really be immersed in the local cuisine since anything you have taken the time to learn, you tend to appreciate more. So let’s wake up the chef in you and check out these places that offer Thai cooking lessons in Koh Samui.
Sonja’s Thai Cooking Class Samui
Operating hours: 10 am to 10 pm
Phone: +66 89 725 5610
For couples who happen to be in Maenam and are looking for a cooking class that is catered to a small group, Sonja is offering private cooking lessons. She has quite a reputation and is popular among tourists because she is a lot of fun and is an effective instructor. Her casual approach to teaching makes her suitable for students who find cooking intimidating. With her, you can learn how to create yummy home style Thai dishes like tom yum, pomelo salad, chili tofu, and soy ginger chicken. Curries are quite in demand and Sonja will teach you to make any kind of curry that is popular locally such as Massaman curry, Paneng curry, yellow curry with fish or seafood. Thai desserts are also taught in her classes. Know how to make mango sticky rice, deep fried banana with honey, and banana in coconut sauce.
Sonja offers both English and German Thai cooking lessons and her easy and friendly approach to teaching makes her classes suitable even for children. You can come with friends or with your spouse or with the whole family and cook together. It’s all sure to be fun and memorable for all of you.
Ying’s Thai Cooking Home
Address: 102/1 Moo 2, Maret, Ko Samui 84310, Thailand
Phone: +66 89 524 9039
Samui born Ying is the woman behind Ying’s Thai Cooking Home. She has a passion for healthy eating and this is reflected in her classes. Her course emphasizes the use of quality and fresh ingredients and focuses on the healthier approach to cooking as seen in her use of heart friendly oils for the recipes. Homestyle Thai dishes cooked the traditional way are the promise of Ying’s.classes. Her workshop is set right in her very own home, which will truly give you more than a glimpse of a real Thai kitchen. The plus is that her whole family will welcome you with friendly smiles and make the experience even more enjoyable for all of you.
Ying’s classes will not only teach you how to cook some of the best local delicacies. They will also allow you to take a break from the usual routine, breathe in the tropical lifestyle, meet new people, and unplug from your modern gadgets that take a huge chunk of your day to day lives. Offering a no-menu session, there is are no preselected program. Instead, you can actively choose what to cook and take active part in choosing your ingredients. Because you will eat what you have prepared in a lavish meal set at her place, Ying advises you to not eat a lot for breakfast to work up your appetite and really appreciate your own cooking.
The fact that Ying is a native of Thailand means that her knowledge about local ingredients and way of life is bottomless. You will learn a lot from her and admire her passion and labor of love that you will see in her cooking.
Island Organics Thai Cooking Class
Operating hours: 10:30 am to 3 pm
Address: 24/1 Moo 4, Chaweng, Bophut, Ko Samui 84320, Thailand
Phone: 00 66 89 731 6814
Combining lessons in Thai cooking with homegrown organic ingredients, Island Organics will teach you to prepare authentic Thai dishes in the best and healthiest way possible. Free from pesticides, grown the natural way and raised in the most ideal of environments, organic ingredients are known for their health benefits and at Island Organics, you will cook using them. Lessons are conducted in English by Master Chef Lat. The kitchen is set outdoors where you can see the garden so the whole experience is relaxed and casual—-perfect even for beginners. The menu is pre-set and varies depending on the day. You can look at their program and book for the day that you prefer. To ensure that you can partake in the classes, make sure that you book online.
Our favorite day of their courses is Tuesday where you will be taught how to make pad Thai, hot & sour prawn soup, papaya salad, and chicken green curry. For vegetarians, we recommend meatless Monday. It has the same menu as with Tuesday, with the chicken green curry being replaced by eggplant green curry. Other dishes you can learn to make are Thai ginger and tofu, spring rolls, and ground pork salad or larb moo.
InFusion Cooking Classes Samui
Operating hours: 8 am to 6 pm
Address: 149 Moo 1, Cabana House, Bophut, Ko Samui 84320, Thailand
Phone: 00 66 93 784 8976
A cool cooking class you can enroll in is the one led by Stephanie courtesy of InFusion Cooking Classes Samui. Not only is Stephanie a talented cook and an effective teacher, she is also very artistic. In her class, you will learn how to plate and present your dishes like pro. Remember that we also ‘eat’ with our eyes.
The classes you can take at InFusion can be a two-hour session or you can partake in one of their half-day programs. While Stephanie is French, her passion for Thai cooking can be seen and tasted in all the dishes she prepares. Her classes are intimate, with no more than 4 people per session. As with most local cooking lessons, you will start with sourcing for your ingredients so you will go to a fresh market where you can see all the herbs, vegetables, meat, and spices used for your favorite local offerings.
The menu at InFusion is one of the most comprehensive selection you can find anywhere in Koh Samui. There are classic favorites such as chicken satay, tom yum kung, and pad Thai. However, you will also be amazed with the collection of some less popular Thai food that are nonetheless worth learning about such as chicken with coconut and galangal, pandan chicken, steamed mussels, and fragrant rice flour puffs. With a menu such as theirs, you can learn to cook even the most challenging of local foods and really build a convincing Thai cuisine portfolio.
Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts
Operating hours: 9am to 7pm
Phone: +66 77 413 172
If you want to take Thai cooking classes to a whole new level, maybe you can try the programs offered at Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts. This company was established in 1999 and offers short classes for tourists and more intensive training for those who want to enhance their cooking portfolio. The Institute issues certificate to those who have completed a minimum required number of classes, which is a great deal if you want to showcase your skills as a chef or culinary expertise in Thai cuisine (perfect if you are planning to own a restaurant or be involved in Thai food business). They have a 6-day cooking immersion where in you can deepen your knowledge about Thai cuisine and go beyond the basics of Thai cooking. In this program, you will learn how to create carefully chosen 60 dishes, with varying degrees of difficulty to really sharpen your skills in the kitchen. Professionals and self taught home chefs can also consider taking up the 12 day cooking program that features about 100 dishes and a lesson in vegetable carving.
Lamai Thai Cooking School
Address: 126/80 Moo 3, Maret, Ko Samui, Thailand
Phone: 00 66 84 096 4994
For those who are thinking of activities to do with family or perhaps a nice honeymoon idea, learning how to cook Thai is sure to be an enriching experience. In Lamai, you can try the lessons presented by Um of Lamai Thai Cooking School. This is another casual venue meant for a small group. The place overlooks the ocean so it is very relaxing and conducive to cooking. The teacher is very knowledgeable and is a good presenter. Each recipe is explained clearly and systematically. At the end of the session, you can take home a recipe book to be your guide when you replicate the dishes in your own kitchen.
At Lamai Thai Cooking School, you will be taught how to make fried spring rolls, prawns in green curry, chicken satay, stir fried chicken and cashews, pad Thai and so many others. You get to choose the dishes that you will cook and you will be introduced to the ingredients needed for the recipe. Set right at the beach and with plenty of greenery all around, this humble venue is a blissful spot for those who want to know more about Thai food and at the same time enjoy the casual tropical scenery. Because it is an interactive program, you will absorb the knowledge easily since you will be doing everything first hand. You won’t simply watch and follow the steps from a distance like in a TV cooking show. Here, you will actually work for the food. You will cut, chop, mince, mix, saute and be really hands on every step of the way.
Zazen Restaurant Thai Cooking Class
Operating hours: 10 am to 3 pm
Phone: 00 66 77 430 345
Learning how to cook Thai in a luxury boutique hotel is also possible. Zazen Restaurant offers Thai cooking classes in their very own state of the art kitchen. World-class facilities, a spacious work area, and stunning views will definitely make your cooking activity an enjoyable experience.
Here you can take individual or one on one lessons so you can truly get to immerse yourself in making your favorite Thai dishes. Feel like a chef for a day on their 2-hour course where you will given an apron and a recipe book. Everything that you make in class will be served to you at Zazen Restaurant or Le Salon de Ti. If you want to impress someone, you can cook for them and they can join you at the restaurant so you can both taste the fruits of your labor with accompanying wine from Zazen’s wine collection.
There are many places where you can avail of cooking lessons in Koh Samui. Our tip is to book ahead of time and to think about the dishes you will cook in advance to get the best out of your classes. Also, ask questions and don’t be intimidated even if you are an amateur. Remember cooking should be fun and food will tastes so much better when you are having a great time. So listen well, soak in the knowledge, and try to cook as many of the things you have learned here at home. Happy cooking.