Bangkok: Thai Vegetarian Cooking at May Kaidee’s School

I’ve been wanting to go Bangkok and one of my to-do list was to attend May Kaidee’s Thai cooking class so I could learn how to cook my favorite dishes – pad thai, green curry etc etc.

May Kaidee som tam

Refreshing green papaya salad also known as Som Tam prepared by Mai Kaidee. I realized they use a special green papaya that is crunchy not the usual orange colored papaya I eat as a fruit. Includes chopped tomatoes, crushed red and green chillies for a spicy kick, raw crunchy green bean and roasted cashew nuts.

May Kaidee getting ready

Once all the participants arrived at 9am, we were escorted to the cooking class upstairs, the restaurant is located on the ground floor. Each of us were given a booklet containing the Thai recipes.

May Kaidee before

We had to learn a Sap Cooking Song in the beginning, that took a while for all classmates to warm up. And then the practical lesson starts. Since all my other classmates came in pairs and I was the odd one out, I kind of had the station to myself.

tom yum

My first dish: Tom Yam Soup. I’ve been making this on my own but it was good to learn how to do it the authentic way.

May Kaidee green curry

It’s not difficult to cook green thai curry if you have instant green chili paste. However, most instant green chili paste has shrimp so it was good that the instructor taught us how to make green chili paste from scratch using a mortar and pestle.


That’s me cooking my favorite Thai dish and just to show I was really there!

Green Curry

Green curry: Kaffir lime leaf, galangal, lemon grass, green chilli paste, coconut milk, eggplant, pumpkin, carrot, mushroom, and chopped mint/ thai basil.

May Kaidee curry

That red curry you see on the left is called Massaman Curry. Instead of green chilli, you use red chilli paste and curry powder with carrot, tomato, pumpkin, and tofu as your mains then add coconut milk, lime juice and soy sauce. Spicy factor depends on how much chilli paste you add in.

May Kaidee spring roll

Do not underestimate the peanut sauce, which is cooked with tomato, tom yam chilli paste, coconut milk, lime juice and sugar. Yummy when used as a dip for pad thai or spring rolls. If you’re wondering, this is an overview of the ingredients required for spring rolls also known as poh piah.

May Kaidee poh piah

I rarely get to eat fresh flour spring roll skin so this is definitely a treat! Wrapped by yours truly.

May Kaidee pad thai

Whenever I’m in a Thai restaurant I would order pad thai and for some reason did not attempt to cook it at home. Now that I’ve learned how to cook this, I’m going to give it a try and maybe invite a friend or two to test it. Main ingredients, pad thai noodles, carrot strips, tofu, and bean sprouts. If you’re vegan, don’t add egg.

chilli paste

We were taught how to make red chilli paste. And this is how it looks before they all turn into a paste after it all went in a blender. A versatile base for curries and dishes.


May has a very bubbly personality and her passion for cooking shines in her teaching. She’s also very skillful cutting the mango for the sticky rice dessert.

May Kaidee dance

After spending the entire morning learning how to cook all the delicious thai food, May Kaidee performed a traditional Thai dance for us. Enchanting!

May Kaidee

This is how the May Kaidee restaurant looks like, located on Tanao Road in an alleyway behind Burger King at the end of Khao San Road.

Surprisingly, I was the only vegetarian at the cooking class, so I’m going to recommend this to all of you that want to pick up some tips whipping up aroy thai cuisines on your travels in Bangkok, Thailand.

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  1. Thai green curry paste is surprisingly easy to make, and it’s so much healthier & fresher-tasting than the store-bought variety. Added to your favorite meats or seafood, noodles, vegetables, tofu, or wheat gluten, this paste will create sumptuous curries. Or use it to make delicious soups or noodle dishes. Cook with the paste right away, or store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks and use it as you need it. The paste can also be frozen for future use. Enjoy!

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