There is no better way to understand the depth and complexity of a country's cuisine than to cook something for yourself. The Smokin' Pot Restaurant offers a very popular cooking course that covers many of the bases. The day starts at the market, where you'll pick up ingredients such as piles of fresh herbs, tubs of pungent prahoc (fermented fish paste), and a selection of meat both white and red. With six students and one teacher in a class, the Smokin' Pot offers an intimate hands-on learning session. You get busy chopping chilies and lemon grass, pounding galangal, kaffir leaves, and garlic, creating an authentic curry paste. Then you put it to good use. Amok is the signature dish here and if you get to master this then you are looking at big praise if you serve it at dinner parties in Europe or the States. It is delicious. The cooking class costs a very reasonable $8 for the day, which usually includes three dishes.