Whilst staying in a town called Yangshuo in the south of China we decided to spend one of our last days rustling up some delicious Chinese dishes on a Chinese cooking class. There were only a small group of 6 of us including two fellow Brits and a Spanish couple. We were firstly taken to the local market to buy and learn about traditional Chinese vegetables and then were taken to this beautiful rustic (practically falling down) barn that had been converted into a kitchen with a huge stainless steel bench complete with gas stoves, woks and all other utensils.
Our ingredients were prepared for us at our individual work stations where we also found what can only be described as massive meat cleaver!! Much to our horror we were expected to use this beast to finely chop the vegetables, garlic, chilli and ginger. With a little help and practice though we soon found that the cleaver is in fact the kitchen’s best invention. It easily slices through anything (including fingers apparently so I took extreme care) and with a gentle wack on the solid wooden board it could easily crush garlic in one swoop!
In total we made five dishes each, watching the master at work first and then trying to recreate her excellence in our own ways. The first dish was an egg fried dumpling. We had already made dumplings at two hostels along the way but these are traditional to the area around Yangshuo. They were basically like an omelette but with pork mix inside.
Our other dishes consisted of steamed chicken, an aubergine dish, fried pork and vegetables, and steamed greens. Simple dishes packed full of flavour and easy to pick up. We will definitely be attempting them again once we’re settled again in our new place.
If you ever find yourself traveling I would definitely recommend going along to a cooking class. It’s a great way of not only improving your cooking skills but also meeting new people and learning more about the country and it’s cuisine.