Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Thai Cooking with Jam

I'm not referring to making Thai food with fruit preserves. Jam is the owner of Austin's Thai Fresh, hands-down my favorite place for the freshest, highest quality bowl of curry or noodles in town.

For the holidays, Mike and I agreed on a no-gifts policy. The only exception would be taking Jam's cooking class together. (We were inspired after sampling some leftovers Huebscher was kind enough to share after her own cooking class with Jam.)

We chose an all-noodle class and finally went a couple of weeks ago. We were taught how to make four types of noodles, each one better than the previous, and decided we needed to make the dishes we loved before we forgot everything we learned in class. So this weekend, after lunch at Asia Cafe, we walked next door to the Asian market to stock up on fish sauce, soy sauce (dark and light), Thai chilies and various types of noodles.

Last night's first attempt at Yum Woon Sen was pretty good, but there are a few things I need to remember for next time.

First, boil the noodles for longer. And drain them a bit better. (They were slightly al dente, and they needed a lot more time to drain after being shocked in a big, icy bowl of water.)

Second, use shrimp and pork. I didn't want to spend a small fortune since I was cooking for four, so I only used pork, and the pork on hand wasn't as finely ground as Jam's (I blame the quality on Mike's neighborhood grocery store and its lack of options). Ideally, I'd use meat from the farmer's market or at least a pricier organic meat next time.

Third, don't forget the cilantro!

*Photos courtesy of Mike. Top photo: our noodles, plated. Just above, from left, Pad See Ew, Pad Thai and Drunken Noodles.

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