Koh Chang Thai cooking schools are another popular way to spend a day off the beach, with a handful of places offering comprehensive instruction in everything from the raw produce, to ingredients, to techniques and presentation.
Classes are small with around 8 to 10 people the maximum, with you each assigned your own individual workstation and gas ring. At Blue Lagoon Cooking School or Kati Culinary, the cooking classes run throughout the day from 11.00am to 16.00. You can take shorter courses, morning, afternoon or evening at Napalai Cooking School and Koh Chang Thai Cooking School. Happy Turtle is more a question of what time suits both parties.
Learning how to make curry pastes is integral to all classes and once you’ve mastered that, it’s put into production with the creation of the classic red, green or Massaman curries themselves. Soups normally include Tom Yam or Tom Kha Gai, with the perennial favourite Pad Thai usually in the mix somewhere. Mango and sticky rice is another very popular choice as the dessert. The teaching is not just restricted to these dishes though and each school also offers unfamiliar recipes, which helps broaden your knowledge of Thai cooking overall. At the end of all classes, you get to eat what you cook.
Transfer between your resort and the cooking school is included in the price. You may also receive a recipe booklet or certificate.
Koh Chang Thai Cooking Schools
Blue Lagoon Cooking School
Klong Prao,southern end
Per Person: 1,500bt
13 years established, located within a wooden building by the water, lessons taught by Yaa start with ingredients, culture, traditions and then practical. 5/6 dishes decided beforehand by class, then prepared and cooked. 11.00am to 4.00pm with maximum 6 -8 persons.
Klong Prao, midway to northern end
Per Person: 1,500bt
Cookery school at one of the island’s very best restaurants. 4 dishes normally prepared – say, spring rolls, penang curry, pad Thai and banana dessert. Professional, full of expertise and fun. 10.30am to 3.30pm with maximum of 10 persons.
Koh Chang Cooking School
Klong Plu, interior in Klong Prao
Per Person: 1,200bt
Lovely location inland, with Teacher Nam in charge of a small kitchen teaching 3 programs, with 6 dishes in each, anything from curry pastes to tom yam or tom kha, laab, somtam, pad siyu to mangoes and sticky rice. 9.00am to 1.00pm or 2.00pm to 6.00pm/maximum of 10 persons.
The Happy Turtle
Per Person: 1,000bt
Small and relaxed class taught by So in the kitchen of the restaurant. Choose 3 dishes from the book and chop, prepare, cook and eat. Curries, noodles, soups and desserts with ingredients explained fully. Lots of fun. 3 to 4 hours/maximum of 4 persons. Often not possible during high season due to the restaurant being busy.
Napalai Thai Cooking School
Klong Prao, inland near the temple
Per Person: 1,000bt upwards
Three classes a day including dinner taught by Bunny in her Klong Prao home. Soups, curries, noodles dishes, curry pastes and of course, mango and sticky rice. Friendly, family set up with maximum of 8 pax. Certificate, transfer included.