I had so much fun in my cooking class at Indigo Pearl, which I reported on a few weeks back, that I asked if there were any cooking classes at my next stop.
When I checked in at the Paresa Phuket, which is a very exclusive and stylish resort that sort of tumbles down a hillside overlooking Kamala Beach on the Southern Thai island of Phuket, I was told that, yes, the hotel not only had Thai kickboxing classes, it also had a cooking school, and I had been enrolled in a cooking class.
Under the tutelage the Paresa Cooking School's excellent cooking tutor, I learned how to make four dishes. This chef took a slightly different approach to the other one. We didn't put in all of the seasonings all at once.
Instead, we would put in about half, let things cook for a while, and then taste, topping up the spices – more heat, more acid, more sweetness – according to our own palate.
I was quite flattered when the chef said that one of my dishes tasted even better than his!
Here is a recipe for Green Curry with Chicken and Vegetables. It is relatively easy to make – assuming you can get all of the ingredients. Purists will want to make their own chicken stock. Lazier foodies might settle for canned chicken stock, adding the other ingredients.
Same goes for coconut milk. If you have access to freshly made coconut milk – if you live in Southeast Asia that won't be a problem – go for it. Otherwise, you can settle for the canned variety.
Geang Khiew Wan Gai
Green Curry with Chicken and vegetable
100 grams Chicken meat 30 grams Green curry paste 100 ml Coconut milk 50 ml Chicken stock (see below) 20 grams Fish sauce (Nam Pla) 10 grams Plum Sugar 20 grams Eggplant 10 grams Red chili 5 grams Fresh kaffir lime leaves 10 grams Sweet basil leaves
In a sauce pan, bring 5 spoonfuls of coconut milk to a boil, dissolving inside the curry paste with the palm sugar. Add the rest of the coconut milk, chicken stock, chicken, eggplant, and the chili. Let it cook for several minutes and serve. Goes well with white rice.
2 kilograms Chicken bones 3 liters Water 250 grams Roughly chopped onion 125 grams Roughly chopped celery 1 tablespoon Coriander root 1 tablespoon Black peppercorns
Wash bones in cold water then put in a pot and cover with cold water. Bring rapidly to the boil then drain and discard water. Cover bones with 3 liters water and add all other ingredients. Simmer for 1 hour, removing the scum as it accumulates. Strain through cloth.