Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Cooking Class in Chiang Mai: Zab-E-Lee's

In my opinion, a Thai cooking class is something that (if time allows) any traveler coming through Chiang Mai should look into.  Not only is it an informative learning experience, but you get to try out your hand in the process AND eat all the amazing food!  Foodie or no foodie, chef or no chef, I think there is fun here for everyone- even for those who claim they "can't cook"- do not worry!  It's all laid out for you and actually most of the work is already done.  You follow some basic instructions and you voila- you are a Thai chef!

This was actually our second time around trying out a cooking class in Chiang Mai.  Last year, we tried out The Best Thai Cookery School, and while it may not be THE best, was also very good (and in a beautiful country setting!).  We were interested in trying out a different company while my parents were here visiting, so after reading many good reviews, we signed up for an evening class with Zabb-E-Lee's Cooking School.  Situated right in the heart of the Old City in Chiang Mai, Zabb-E-Lee's did not disappoint.

We began the evening around 4pm at a local market.  Here, our teacher explained about the different ingredients that we will be cooking with.  After some time to explore the market, we went to school!

Here we are smelling different types of basil.  There are three main types here: Sweet basil, Holy basil, and Spicy basil

Learning about what goes into Pad Thai (tamarind paste!)
Can you guess what this is?  .... (it's chicken blood!)
My mom... isn't she cute? :)

After our time at the market, we were driven to the location of the cooking school- just a few minutes away from the market.  It was the four of us and just one other couple in our class along with our teacher, Snooker (yes, that's his name!).  Snooker was an excellent teacher and had a great sense of humour which made the night even more enjoyable.  We had a choice of one appetizer, one curry/soup, one main, and one dessert.  It was a LOT of food in the end, but it was all amazing.  I ended up bringing home my spring rolls and dessert because I was just too full!

Cooking Stations
Prep Stations 

And here is just some(!) of the food we created:
Khao Soi- one of my personal favourites
Cashew Chicken stir fry with rice
Red Curry
Tom Kha Gai (Coconut Soup with Chicken)
Just part of my meal: Mango with sticky rice, Khao Soi, and fried spring rolls.  All YUM!
This evening was one of the highlights of my parents visit to Chiang Mai.  If you ever get the chance to visit, I would highly recommend Zabb-E-Lee's cooking school!


  1. Looks amazing & fun, I would love to try the cooking school next time we visit Chiangmai :) Also this is really funny but I think your mom and David's mom Carol look alike!! :p -Jetaime

    1. You guys would love doing this! :)
      And now that you say that, I can totally see the resemblance between Carol and my mom... I also think they'd get along really well :p