Vietnam – Hoi An – Green Bamboo Cooking Class

– NOVEMBER 08, 2015

Today we wanted to get some Vietnamese cooking experience at the very popular Green Bamboo Cooking Class in Hoi An, Vietnam.  The Green Bamboo Cooking School has a very comprehensive menu for clients to choose from.  The clients are asked to make their choices and after everyone has selected different dishes then we need to gather the various ingredients to cook with.  The dishes our group selected were as follows:

Kenneth – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

Jill – Vegetarian spring rolls with Sweet and sour dipping sauce

Lynn – Caramelized pork belly

Karim – Stuffed Squid

Everyone – Grilled chicken salad

Everyone – Grilled shrimp salad

Matt – Stir fry fish with lemon grass and chili

Everyone – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

Leanne – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

We were picked up from our hotel via a shuttle bus, then everyone was dropped off at the Hoi An street market so we could do the shopping for our ingredients with our cooking instructor, Van.  There was everything you could imagine in this market, with everything freshly killed that morning so there were no flies buzzing around the stalls.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

We started with a lady shredding coconut into a plastic bag.  This coconut is plump with the juice and can be squeezed into fresh coconut milk for the vegetarian curry dish.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

Our cooking instructor, Van, has been running these classes for over five years.  She really was an expert in these dishes and she took the time to explain each ingredient at the market in great detail.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Hoi An street market shopping for our ingredients with our instructor Van.

After we finished picking up our ingredients, we jumped back into the shuttle bus to ride over to the Green Bamboo Cooking School.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

First we started with vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk.  This was my dish and after dicing the veggies and then hand-squeezing the coconut to extract the fresh coconut milk.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

One liter of fresh coconut milk was extracted by the time it was all done.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

Next the sliced veggies were mixed with the curry powder and other spices.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

With everything mixed together it was time to simmer and cook the veggie curry.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

After dishing up the final product, everyone had a taste.  It was a success (a theme repeated throughout the day for every dish to be honest).

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian curry with fresh coconut milk

Jill was up with her vegetarian spring rolls.  After dicing up her various veggies, she moved on to rolling the spring rolls.  She pulled in some help in rolling these beauties.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

Then it was time to fry the spring rolls, where Jill used the cooking chopsticks to do some impressive cooking.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

Then she recruited some more help in frying some rolls for themselves.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

All done!

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

Wrapped in some fresh lettuce, sprinkled with some sprouts and sweet & sour dipping sauce, plus with a Larue beer to wash it all down.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vegetarian spring rolls & Sweet and sour dipping sauce

Next up is the caramelized pork belly.  After trimming the fat and dicing up the pork belly into medium sized pieces, the meat went into a pan with heated sugar.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

The pork belly then went into a cooking pot with some boiling water to slow cook.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

A thing of beauty!!!

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Caramelized pork belly

Stuffed squid was next on the hit list, so Van showed us how to remove the inedible parts of the squid and how to utilize the edible parts in the dish.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

The stuffed squid includes veggies and shrimp, so we all pitched in to remove the shrimp tails and de-poop the little critters.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

The stuffing filled up the squid, then it was off to the frying pan.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

The plating looks great!

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

Slicing up the squid and then we all had a taste.  Delicious!

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stuffed Squid

The grilled chicken salad is pretty straight forward and easy, but we had some extra time so we added a couple of extra dishes.  The grilled shrimp salad is also pretty simple.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Grilled chicken salad

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Grilled shrimp salad

Next was the stir fry fish with lemon grass and chili.  Van showed us the way to debone the fish and remove the inedible parts of the fish.  Once done, the fish was diced into cubes.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stir fry fish with lemon grass and chili

A simple fry for a couple of minutes and adding the flavors and sauce, then you have a completed dish.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stir fry fish with lemon grass and chili

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Stir fry fish with lemon grass and chili

Van showed us how to make the Vietnamese pancake batter, then we created two different types: a pork pancake and a shrimp pancake.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

After ensuring the pancake was crisp on the bottom, we flipped the pancake and cooked the other side.  It was fun to watch everyone flip the pancakes.  Some were pretty good with their flips, while others were good for a friendly chuckle.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Vietnamese pancake with shrimp or pork

Next up was the Pho bo (beef noodle soup), where we started by getting two pots boiling.  One pot was for a quick wash on the beef bones, then the bones were moved into the second pot where the real magic happened.  The beef was very thinly sliced, so when the broth/soup was ready we would place the raw beef into the bowl and then the soup would cook the beef right there in the soup bowl.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class – Pho bo (beef noodle soup)

That was some truly delicious beef noodle soup.

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Green Bamboo Cooking Class

After we had each had a meal from each dish, we were all too full to move!  Luckily we enjoyed some good company and then after a little while the shuttle bus drove us back to our hotels.  This was a great idea to do this cooking class, as Green Bamboo Cooking School was a very professional business and Van was exceptional at making everyone feel at ease with the joy of cooking.

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For more photos of our adventure go to our flickr account here.