Sticky Rice Cooking School, Adelaide
96 Mount Barker Road
Stirling SA 5152
(08) 8339 1314
The Sticky Rice Cooking school in the Adelaide hills is definitely worth a visit. I travelled from Melbourne for the experience, and I can safely say there is nothing quite like it here in Melbourne. Most cooking classes or course are very much 'sit back and watch', while at Sticky Rice you are completely involved in the process.
I was lucky enough to have Katrina Ryan from 'The Spirit House' as my chef for the day. There were about 8 of us in the class. Most were from Adelaide and thought a drive to the hills was a huge journey. It only took us 25 minutes drive from the Adelaide CBD! The setting is beautiful. It is in a town called Stirling, a little reminiscent of perhaps Sasafrass in the Dandenongs.
The kitchen was set up as professional setting you might see in a large city hotel, with one large workspace in the centre where we each had our own space. We were sous chefs to Katrina, doing whatever she asked, and following her direction to create each set dish. As Katrina Ryan is from the Spirit House, the food was all Thai inspired, and the recipes included basic pastes used in various dishes, Prawn and Cuttlefish with Chilli Paste, Braised Pork with Sweet Soy, Cinnamon and Star Anise. (see recipe)
The class was run with precision. In the middle of the class we a had a small break, and were supplied with thai beers and nibbles, giving us the chance to meet the others in the class and chat about food and why they were here. One of the class members was a local lady who helped the chool by purchasing all the ingredients at the market. She explained that when they started the school many thai ingredients were not easily found, however now it was much more available, even in Coles and Woolworths!
Overall the class was fantastic, providing knowledge on new ingredients, techniques and thai food culture. As we finished cooking the last of the dishes we were shown to the dining room where we sat and enjoyed the banquet with the other guests along with some fine local wines.