I have a love and hate relationship with social media. But tonight, it’s 100% love. Two years ago I wrote an article about my trip to Mandalay, Myanmar. On the article I talked about getting lost in a jade market and ending up in a beautiful wooden house. Link to article; Getting Lost in Mandalay, Myanmar I never really figured out the name or the use of the house. It has been a mystery for years! After countless searches, I took a break. Until a blogger from Thailand contacted me asking about the specifics of the wooden house. I thought I’d give it another search and voila! A familiar photo on google images popped out, linked on a youtube video.
For the final leg of my Indonesia trip I decided to sign up for an all day cooking class in Bali. Trying local delicacies has always been the highlights of my travels, but this time, I want more than just the food, I want to do the cooking!
After a quick internet research I found a reputable company called Ubad Ubud Bali Cooking Class. Reservation was easy, all it took was 2 emails and one final confirmation email. We were picked up from our Ubud hotel early in the morning. From there we headed to a local market outside of Ubud, Pasar Umum Gianyar. Not for shopping but for a tour. Everything we needed for our cooking class was already prepared in advanced.
Our wonderful host gave us an educational tour; showing us tips on how to save money, teaching us market etiquettes, and of course, we spent some time learning about the local produce.
The cooking class was held at our host’ ancestral compound. It was a beautiful home with garden and traditional features every Balinese home would have.
We were welcomed with a sweet treat of pandan rice cake and fresh mango juice.
The set up for the cooking class was very homey yet professional.
There were two gas stoves, 1 charcoal grill, brick oven, small mortar and pestle, and a giant mortar and pestle (my absolute favorite!).
We started off by sampling some of the ingredients; turmeric, cumin, ginger, and lemon leaves to name a few.
We first made a soup with coconut and mushroom served as an appetizer. It gave us needed energy for all the chopping, grinding, and wrapping of the ingredients.
With a small class of four, our host was able to make things more personal. We were laughing and learning together, as we took turns mixing, grilling, and chopping.
Two people in our group are vegetarians. They used tempeh (cooked and slightly fermented soybeans) for the dishes involving meat. If you have any dietary restrictions just let them know in advanced and they will do their best to accommodate your needs.
We learned how to make eight amazing traditional Balinese dishes: 1. Sate ayam (grilled chicken) 2. Gado-gado (vegetables with peanut sauce) 3. Mushroom and coconut soup 4. Fern salad 5. Tofu and tempeh with sweet sauce 6. Chicken soup 7. Black and white rice with palm sugar (dessert) 8. Steamed tuna in banana leaves. We also had jackfruit and mangoes from our host’s own backyard.
After hours of cooking everyone was excited to feast, but first, time for a beautiful fruit carving presentation. Puspa’s cousin did a brief demonstration on how to create amazing shapes out of fruits and fruit peels. It was learning and entertaining. I wish I took photos but I was too busy paying attention.
The food was beautifully prepared, buffet style, in a special garden area.You dine best when you dine with nature! The photo below doesn’t justify the actual beauty of the set up.
If you want to learn the recipes and methods for the above dishes I highly suggest, when in Bali, to sign up for Ubad Ubud Bali Cooking Class. They are very knowledgeable and will go above and beyond to meet your needs. You will gain so much knowledge not just about the local dishes but also about the unique culture of Bali. The entire class was highly organized and Puspa gave very clear explanations. Word of advice, come hungry and prepare yourself for a Balinese feast. A truly unforgettable experience.
More information about Ubad Ubud Bali
Price: $25.00 (as of 2016)
Services: Cooking class and market tour
Free hotel pick up and drop off
Free copy of recipes included in the price