In case you haven’t noticed, food is a vital part of our travel itinerary. We spend a great deal of time shopping for it, buying it, preparing it, cooking it, tasting it, photographing and videoing it, commenting on it, sharing it with others, pairing it with beer, wine or any other beverage and generally enjoying everything about it.
Our most favorite thing to do while traveling is taking cooking classes. We used to think taking these classes were all about food. Now we know better. There are loads of reasons for taking cooking classes. In Hoi An, we discovered that some of them have nothing to do with food.
Cooking classes are a great way to learn about a new area, new people, new customs, and culture. We recently took our bikes to the beach to find a geocache that was hidden near the Beach Village Restaurant. We, actually Bev, found the geocache, a new restaurant, some new friends and a new way to look at food.
Bev found the geocache, of course, with a little help from the terrific waitstaff. Since we were already there , what the heck, we said, “lets see what is on the menu”.
Much to our deight, the grilled scallops with peanut sauce were amazing. As you can see, they were almost gone when we realized we needed to photograph the dish.
Naturally, we asked about the cooking classes, registered, paid, and excitedly returned to our Airbnb for the evening.
The class was to begin at 10. We grabbed our bikes and were there well ahead of schedule. We were greeted by Chef Dong, whose family runs two restaurants, the cooking school, and some fishing boats as well. There is a wonderful heart warming story here, unfortunately there isn’t enough space to tell it. Suffice it to say, the whole family is involved and couldn’t be more happy.
We have learned so much from taking cooking classes. Not about food and food preparation either. We have learned about the place we are visiting, the people, the customs, the culture. As much as we love cooking and eating, the best reason to take cooking classes is the people. We have made new friends in each of our classes. Today it was Andreas and Susan, originally from Germany, now living the Expat life in Shanghai.
No matter where we go, we inevitably meet another person or couple, spend some time with them, laugh alot, learn alot, and realize just how similar we are, and how much we have in common. We should all practice food diplomacy more often.
See you on the road.
Bev & John
Since 2017 Bev and John have visited