Thai food and flavours are some of the most fresh and delicious in the world in my opinion. It always seemed like something so delicious would be difficult to create at home but after my fabulous day at Patara with Chef Tam I was proved otherwise.
My favourite photos from the day had to be the ingredients. Mostly recognisable (a few new discoveries) were just so charasmatic on their own. They were visually inviting and had aromas that made you make salivate.
Our host for the event was the Top Chef Thailand winner ‘Tam’ Chudaree Debhakam. An artisan of modern Thai cuisine that involves creating twists on a classic. Her love of authentic fresh ingredients helps her create beautiful dishes that taste incredible. Having a fantastic teacher like this to work with was a definite attraction to the class. It was a wonderful opportunity to have a professional sharing her love of food with us.
First course Tom Yum Goong – the famous spicy and sour soup
The Tom Yum Goong was an exciting dish to make because of it’s popularity in the UK. It’s a dish I’ve had so many times and it comes in so many forms all incorporating the delicious flavours of Thai food. For the fish we used stunningly large prawns, creamy coconut milk, hot chilli and the lemon grass along with the iconic shimeji mushrooms to create the dish.
I was so stunned with how only a few ingredients could create such a wonderful dish that was so full of flavour. It took a lot of fear of trying to create new cuisines and has made me want to attempt creating the dishes at home. The aromas of the dish as it was cooking were out of this world. Our group of keen foodies were becoming very impatient for it cook. Luckily it was a quick dish and we soon got to enjoy it.
Salad course – Chao Wang Salad (crab, herbs with seasonal salad leaves)
This salad was one of the most delicious salads I’ve ever had. The fresh cool crab with the rich flavours of the herbs combined with the curry sauce, crunch of the fresh green and nuttiness of the peanuts on top was just beautiful. Like the dish before we had a super time creating it and even more of a nice time eating it. It was a surprisingly quick dish to make and the way Tam demonstrated made it appear so simple and her nature was relaxed yet passionate. It was second nature to move her hands, mix ingredients and produce a stunning dish that looked effortless. To my surprise it was easy to make in our groups but also so fresh and flavoursome to eat.
The last dish was the Chicken Green Curry
The classic green curry dish is a favourite of mine but attempts to make it at home have always not been great. The flavours have been a little lifeless so getting an opportunity to learn how the expert makes it was one I couldn’t pass up and the one which made me most excited when I found out what we’d be cooking.
The list of ingredients might be long but most of them recognisable or easy to get with a little help from the internet or a trip to a Thai supermarket or Chinatown. The baby aubergines with the chicken was delicious. The mix of fresh and dried herbs cooked with coconut milk and green curry paste came together to produce a dish that was very creamy and smooth but also had a great fieriness. I’ve already made this at home, and although not perfect yet, it definitely had better flavours and was so moreish.
If you are interested in learning out more about Thai food and flavours definitely keep an eye out for classes at Patara.