While traveling, try a cooking class to learn how to prepare local meals. You will get the chance to learn about the culinary culture and have a good time. I have taken 3 different cooking classes so far. Each one was fun, but very different.
This is the first cooking class I took, at Cooking Lisbon in 2015. It was a great experience. We were about 12 people and we cooked the dinner together while drinking wine, so everyone was quite cheerful by the end of the class when we ate the food. The event also included an olive oil tasting. The place was a large and modern kitchen which was very well designed for hosting classes. After the event, they provided all the recipees for us to be able to cook the meal at home, although I found some of the ingredients and preparation steps might be tricky to find/reproduce on my own.
Our cooking experience in Tokyo, also in 2015, was of a very different type. It was more similar to having a chief invite us at his place and cook for us. I was with 3 friends in Tokyo and we went to the home of Kazuyuki Takagi from KitchHike for a fine japanese cuisine dinner. He had created a menu especially for us! Although his events normally do not involve guest getting involved in meal preparation, we asked and he let us help, so we did participate a little in cooking the meal. I highly recommend the experience for a great discovery of Japanese specialties with a highly knowledgeable host who can answer your questions. He even recommended a great karaoke place for us to finish the evening!
Yes, I also took a cooking class in my own hometown! I had four guests from other countries last year and I wanted to share our traditions with them. So, the last place I’ll share with you is Madame Germaine. This is actually the name of the grandmother of the owner. The couple who is running this class is inviting the students in their own ancestral house (of which they gave us a tour) on the shore of the Saint-Lawrence river. The food was simple but delicious, and totally authentic. I recognized recipees that my own grandmother used to cook for our family. They presented the history of traditional Quebec cooking and offered a tasting of maple sirup. We then ate the dinner we cooked in their dining room. They provided the recipees afterwards so we can cook them at home. In addition to the traditional Quebec cooking class that we took, they also offer other classes for traveling through culinary adventures.
Challenge for YOU
Take a cooking class. Sometimes, you can learn how to cook exotic food in your own city without even travelling! Tell us about your experience in the comments. Would you recommend the class to a tourist traveling to your area? Please, share the contact information.