Trying Burmese Food For The First Time | Mae Hong Son, Thailand

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Burmese Green Tea Salad, my favorite Burmese food so far

In northern Thailand, there are a lot of Burmese refugees who create their own communities and spread their cultures, so you can find many Burmese restaurant around. Before I came to northern Thailand, I had never had Burmese food before, but now I love it. Although it is not Thai food, it’s now a part of culture in Thailand, and you will find so many of them in cities up north.

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Vegetable curry

The restaurant was right beside the pond in the city. There was a wooden sign in front so it was easy to find. We picked Burmese Green Tea Salad as recommended on the Lonely Planet, and Vegetable curry. Burmese Salad tastes both sweet and salty with peanuts, tomatoes and garlic, and I really liked the combination. Vegetable curry was mild but the taste of all the vegetables soaked in the soup, and it goes so well with rice with mixed grains.

Overall my first experience of Burmese food turned out great. I will definitely try more in the future.

Where we ate: Salween River Restaurant (Google Maps)

Thai Cooking Class | Chiang Mai, Thailand

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Recipe book

One of the things you should do in Thailand is to take a cooking class. You can learn how Thai food is cooked and will be more familiar with ingredients. But most of all, you will be able to cook them at home, which I really wanted to do, because I knew I was going to miss all the delicious food in Thailand.

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Ingredients were ready

We booked a cooking course online, and a staff picked us up at our hostel. There were 8 people in our group, including the ones from U.S., Germany, and Taiwan. First we went to a local market close to the cookery school, and our teacher taught us names of different kinds of ingredients, and how they are used in dishes according to each occasion.

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Cooking Chicken Cashew Nut, my favorite Thai food of all time

After we came back from the market, we chose dishes we wanted to cook. These are 3 dishes in each section: main dish, soup, salad, and curry, and we picked up Chicken Cashew Nut, Tom Yum Kung, Som Tam, and Paneng Curry.

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Tom Yum Kung (Spicy and Sour Soup) and Som Tam (Spicy Papaya Salad)

We stood in front of the cooking table, and started chopping ingredients. We put all of them in one plate, and moved to the different room where we actually cook. Before we throw them into Wok (pan) with fish sauce, oyster sauce and other seasonings, teacher showed us how to do it. It was pretty easy, and didn’t even take 10 minutes to finish up.

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Chicken Cashew Nut

After all of the dishes were cooked, we set out table and tried them. Some of them were really good, and others were missing something, but we knew what we needed to do to make them better.

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Paneng curry, my favorite curry in Thailand

I realized, cooking delicious Thai food is somehow miracle, since with about 10 minutes of cooking, a little more or less seasoning can change everything. That’s why there are so many different kind of tastes in one particular dish, and we always try to seek the one we like the most.

Place: Baan Thai Cookery School (Google Maps)

Courses: 1000B/person (9:40am. – 4:00 pm.), 800B/person (4:30pm. – 8:30 pm.)

 

 

A Village on Top of the Mountain | Mae Hong Son, Thailand

 

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The village we stayed

In a beautiful northern city of Thailand, Mae Hong Son, my boyfriend and I decided to go trekking. We booked a 2 day tour at Sunflower Cafe Tour, by the big pond in the middle of the city. Our guide named Pordy, who has been trekking more than 30 years. Turned out it was 10 hour trek in total, but we decided to give it a go.

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Fried rice and chicken and vegetables, our lunch on trekking

When I first imagine trekking, there is a little path on the way and we walk listening to wind or birds singing, as I’ve done a couple of times in Thailand. But for this time, it wasn’t that easy, and not just hard either.

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Pordy cooking dinner

There was absolutely no path at all on our way. Pordy handed a stick so he can slap weed down and make a path for us as he walks. We walked along the river, inside the river, climbing slippery rocks blocking our way, walking up and down on a steep mountain, hiking on the edge of the cliff, looking right beside us far away down, and fighting with our fears to fall… after 6 hours of crossing many mountains, we finally arrived and we are all in drenching sweat and exhausted.

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Our dinner at the village

We took a quick shower after we arrived, and it was time for dinner. There were only three people living in the village and all of them cooked dinner for us. We had some stir-fried pumpkins, chicken and vegetables, and lizard soup, which Pordy got from his friend on the way.

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He was watching us while we eat

With subtle fish sauce taste and the combination of the ingredients, the food was so good. I didn’t have any idea how they get some spices and sources since they always live in the village, but they managed to cook deliciously. I think it was worth the tough trekking. Northern Thailand is famous for delicious food generally, but now I’m assured that it’s true.

Trekking Tour: 1500B-/person

We trekked with: Sunflower Cafe Tour (Google Maps)

BEST OF 2015

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2015 was the best year of my life.

I traveled around the world.

I learned to fight with my shyness.

I made friends from all over the world.

I met my best friend for the lifetime.

I sailed in the ocean.

I found love.

When I close my eyes, all the great memories come into my mind like a flashback. It’s sad that you can never go back to the wonderful time you spent, but you have to live in the moment, hoping that 2016 will be a much much better year!

Here’s my brief recap video of 2015. Enjoy! 🙂

Watch on YouTube: BEST OF 2015 | The Japanese Traveler

 

 

Danish Christmas Dinner | Stable Lodge, Bangkok

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My favorite time of the year has finally come! Although it doesn’t feel like Christmas being sweaty and all everyday, there are many places you can still feel the holiday spirits in Bangkok. Not only you can enjoy this holiday season visually with festive Christmas lights in town, but also sensuously having delicious Christmas feast with your folks, even if you are far away from home.

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My friends and I went to the Stable Lodge, a Scandinavian restaurant on Sukhumvit Soi 8 in Bangkok, in the beginning of December. Some of my friends from Denmark planned a Christmas Dinner Party together and about 20 of us gathered in this restaurant. When we went inside, the buffet plates were prepared on the table and they were ready to be served. I was so excited with all the food, because I had never had danish food or even Scandinavian food before.

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Every one put a reindeer headband prepared on the table, now it’s time to start a feast. A glass of Chang beer on one hand (Yes, it was Thai beer.), we began to eat. I had some bread, meat, seafood, and many different kinds of fish cooked in a various ways. I put all of them on a slice of bread, and placed it in my mouth. Some of the food was salty, and the others taste differently. Savoring the combination of those in my mouth, I was satisfied at the end.

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While enjoying our food, we exchanged Christmas presents and played some games. Listening to the Christmas music, we also enjoyed chatting and sharing our great memories of the year. Overall, I really enjoyed the time there. I already can’t wait for the next year! xD

 

Where we ate:Stable Lodge (Google Maps)

Best Thai Food in Thailand | Little Eden Guesthouse, Pangmapha

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Gai Phat Kaeng Kari: Chicken with Coconut Cream & Curry wih Rice (90B)

During our scooter trip around Northern Thailand, my boyfriend and I found a guesthouse in a small town, Pang Mapha (Sop Pong), on the way to Pai from Mae Hong Song. The place was in the middle of nowhere, where no tourist is around. We were driving the road noticing local gas stations aside, and all of a sudden, we found the place. It was owned by Thai lady and her Dutch husband, so the rooms and bungalows looked European themed.

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Reception/Restaurant of Little Eden Guesthouse

The Thai owner cooks all the food in here. When I first tried the dish, I was shocked because it was so delicious, more than any of the dishes I had in the past 10 months living in Thailand. Maybe because I was starved, but something was totally different. I was wondering what makes them so good, and I noticed there were corianders in almost every dishes.

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Chicken Rice Soup: Traditional Thai Breakfast

When it comes to coriander, I personally don’t like it. Coriander alone has a strong flavor and can change the whole plate into a different one. But as with other spices and herbs, it makes the best. Mixed with other flavors, I didn’t even noticed there were corianders in it. I just felt a lot of different tastes in my mouth, and it was so delicious.

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Tofu Oup: Fried Tofu with Eggs and Rice (70B)

There are not only dishes on the menu the Thai lady cooks, but also home-made fudge brownies and carrot cakes. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to try them last time, but if you have any chance to drop by, let me know how it goes!

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Breakfast table

 

Bungalows: 400B/night-

Address: 295 Moo 1, T. Soppong, Pangmapha, Mae Hong Son 58150 Thailand (Google Maps)

Go to: Little Eden Guesthouse WebsiteLittle Eden Guesthouse Facebook Page

The Best Pad Thai in Thailand | Thip Samai, Bangkok

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Pad Thai at Thip Samai restaurant

Pad Thai, a Thai-style noodle, is one of the most famous Thai food in Thailand. At every corner, there are always street food restaurants selling this extremely popular dish. Every tourist has it during their journey. Pad Thai is one of the first food they remember the name and manage to order by themselves. Of course locals have it often. You will never find the restaurant which doesn’t have it on the menu.

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The sign of the restaurant

Among all those prevalent Pad Thais, Thip Samai makes the best. It is located on Maha Chai Road, which is about 5 minutes drive from Khaosan Road. There is always a long queue in front of the place, including a lot of locals. Employees restlessly move their hands and cook each part of the process.

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Thip Samai is famous among media in different countries

There are only a few kinds of Pad Thai on the menu. What I had is the one with shrimp and wrapped with egg (60baht). Unlike many other Pad Thais, Thip Samai makes it creamier and soft, using sweet thick source, and the wrapped egg makes it special. Being close to the major tourist attraction Khaosan Road, this place should definitely be on your bucket list in Thailand.

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Staff wrapping noodles with egg

 

Open daily: 5 pm – 2 am

Address: 313 Mahachai Rd., Samranrat, Phra Nakorn 10200 (Google Maps)

Go to: Thip Samai website, Thip Samai Facebook Page