Asia Scenic Goes Vegan: My Day at One of Chiang Mai’s Thai Cooking Schools

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Another fond look back at the hiatus, and my experience at Chiang Mai’s Asia Scenic Cooking Class. Curry appreciation, galore. Continue reading

Hashtagging the Hiatus: Scenes from Cambodia & Thailand

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Are you curious about this so-called “Hiatus, Hiatus” that’s being referenced? Perhaps, you don’t have an Instagram account…or, you’ve found yourself wishing you could see all of Jess and Julia’s Instagram photos from their travels in one place but are slightly too lazy or not creepy enough to figure it out?
You’re in luck (ya weirdo)! Here are some of the highlights from our two-month adventures in Thailand and Cambodia. Enjoy… Continue reading

Raw Chocolate with De-hydrated – Modern Living Cuisine

It’s now been one month and one week of fresh young coconut withdrawals, and I’ve finally stopped tearing up as I glance at the $2.99 and up,  flown-across-the-globe selections around town. It hasn’t been easy (well, the glaring price helps), but somehow, I keep my wallet in my bag. Recently, I caught myself staring at coconut photos in my Flickr and slowly realized, it’s beyond time I shared some of my winter vacation photos from SE Asia. And being that it’s the day after eat-chocolate-in-bed day, I finally knew where to begin. 

Let me explain: during my travels, I attended three very different culinary classes: a vegetarian cooking class at Peace Cafe in Siem Reap, May Kaidee’s Cooking School in Bangkok, and Raw Chocolate Prep by De-Hydraded Modern Living Cuisine. I’ll get to the first two classes eventually, because I really want to tell the tale of my love affair with Cambodian Amok and so on, but for now, let me photo document some raw chocolate creations. The class was taught my friend, the charming Jennifer M. Robertson, who I’d met at Vida Vegan Con back in August. Ah, the VVC connection!  Jen showed our class how to make a Thai-spiced chocolate smoothie, a rich chocolate torte with a well-textured coconut macadamia crust, assorted raw chocolate truffles, decadent bite-sized chocolate candies with a “royal” garnish, and be still my heart, young coconut-based dark chocolate ice cream with a candied cardamom-pistachio topping. Nearly everything used was organic, all dishes were prepared from scratch, and generous samples were provided of everything.

First up, a Thai-spiced chocolate smoothie with a base of frozen bananas and fantastic heat from local, organic chili peppers. When you ask a class in Thailand if they want their smoothie “spicy”, the response is going to be enthusiastically positive.

Looking back on this photo, I remind myself to breathe.

Starting the ice cream process

Ingredient display

For the tart crust.

Prepared raw macadamia and coconut tart crusts. This simply set for a short period of time before filling.

Raw cacao butter based truffles + green tea powder

Rollin’

Raw lucuma powder – so intriguing!

For the chocolate candies. The gold leaves are of a Buddhist design.

Set & adorned (these are clearly my jet-lagged examples)

Cacao nibs, crushed nuts and candied cardamom-pistachios: all raw toppings for the following treat…

Everything I sampled (damn new cashew allergy!) was so lovely, but the young coconut-based dark chocolate ice cream was tops and one of the most memorable flavors of my vacation.

My decorated tart, with dark chocolate mousse and torn flower petals

 

Jen takes her classes and retreats around the world. Check out the De-hydrated facebook for regular updates.