If you’re looking for a fun and culturally enriching activity in Taipei, I absolutely recommend cooking classes from Jodie’s Kitchen.
Jodie opens her cute, quaint home in the hillside of Taipei for those yearning to learn the basics of authentic Chinese and Taiwanese cooking styles. However, don’t expect those typical cooking classes where everyone stands near their own stove and plays “follow the leader.” Rather, Jodie focuses on teaching her students the truest form of traditional cooking: using the core seasonings and ingredients to create the flavors that Chinese food is known for.
To me, flavor is what truly differentiates Chinese food from any other cuisine, and once you know how to mix and match the flavors and seasonings, you can create many dishes. Jodie teaches you how to create these flavors and sauces, which can be used for vegetables, grilled seafood, soups, and more. In one aspect, her cooking class requires you to put on your thinking cap. What should I add to this mixture to create a different tasting sauce? Chinese sauces are like layers. With each layer, there is a completely new and different taste.
The format of her class is simple. It usually lasts 4 hours, but that varies depending on if you have classes for multiple days, which she offers. My group of 11 paid $2,000 NT each – which is around $62 USD. It was well worth it because not only did I learn about sauces and dishes that I will definitely teach my family, but we ate delicious food!
Here is what our group cooked during the class. I’m sure this varies depending on the group.
Ginger and black sugar tea
Soft tofu with Taiwanese dressing
Cucumber with white sesame oil
Eggplant with ginger dressing
Sour and spicy soup