You haven’t traveled until you have eaten the food. This is what I believe when I travel. I’m glad I discovered Withlocals.com a few months ago. It lets you experience to dine and cook in a local’s house, it can’t get any authentic than that.
Read more: Eat and travel with locals
During our Bangkok trip, I made sure to book an experience with Withlocals. I chose the one offered by Predaphol “Cook like a local!”. Not only we get to have a hearty lunch of Thai dishes, we get to learn to cook a few Thai dishes. Upon booking, Predophol or Phoom as his nickname, sent the menu and asked if we have special requests. Jeff likes Green Chicken Curry so I specifically mentioned that. We scheduled our Thai lunch on our 2nd day in Bangkok, our host, Phoom, gave his number and kept in touch during our trip. He even waited for us at the BTS station Chong Nonsi near his restaurant i-Gourmet. Yes, this guy is a chef so you’re sure to have a delicious meal with him.
I paid 45 Euros or $ 56 for our lunch booking at the site. Withlocals accepts Paypal and credit card payments.
Instead of simply sitting down and munching your food away, you are offered the opportunity of cooking your own real Thai dishes! All ingredients will be prepared in a professional manner – healthy and clean. You can learn by watching me cook, or you can help and get to know the basics of local food styles and ingredients.
Phoom prepared the ingredients prior to our arrival, he told us the basics of Thai cuisine, the spices used in most dishes. For Jeff’s green chicken curry, here are the ingredients.
I listed down some of the ingredients I remember. It’s funny because Phoom said that this is the first time he’s gonna cook chicken curry, haha. He never cooked it at home. It was very enlightening because all the while, I thought that the fragrant herb in the chicken curry I tasted is lemongrass. I was wrong, it’s kaffir lime leaves.
These are the ingredients for Pla Goong or Spicy Shrimp Salad. This is the one I made with the help of Phoom. He said that Thai cuisine consisted of 4 different tastes called Yum, these are sweet, spicy, salty, and sour. Hence, this salad has all that tastes.
Since we have different tolerance for spiciness, he let us decide if we’ll add more chilies on the dish.
Some dishes were already cooked and ready to serve. Are you ready for a feast?
I didn’t get to note the Thai names of some of the dishes though. This one is a non-spicy dish with pork slices and ampalaya leaves (talbos ng ampalaya).
Another non-spicy dish, pancakes with plum sauce as dip.
This salad uses the same base of the Spicy Shrimp Salad we made but added sigarilyas and sliced hard boiled egg on the side.
This is Jeff’s Green Chicken Curry or Gaeng Khiao Wan Gai. “Gai” means chicken. It has a lot of coconut milk because it serves as a soup to our lunch. Unlike here that we treat this as a main dish.
My favorite dish, haha (love your own!). Pla Goong is an indeed an explosion of sweet, spicy, salty, and sour in my mouth. I can’t get enough of this salad.
We had a great lunch with Phoom and his fiancee Tangmo. They gave us some packs of green curry mixes so that we can cook at home. They even invited us to go to the market the next day to get to know more of the spices used in Thai cooking but we begged off since we came from Chatuchak. I highly recommend to book with Phoom at Withlocals, it’s worth it. But do book in advance because he is a very busy person. And if you can’t get hold of him during your stay in Bangkok, you can just dine at his Thai restaurant I-Taste just beside I-Gourmet in Sathorn.