FOOD IN OUR RETREAT
What people are saying about our food:
'The food is fresh and very tasty, really, the best currys in Pai. Healthy, non gluten and no milk, with vegan and vegetarian options.'
Lara A. November 10 2017 Read full review on trip advisor.
'The food and people are amazing.'
Carolyn C. November 6 2017 Read full review on trip advisor.
For most of our guests, the food is one of the highlights of their stay.
Quality food is essential for martial artists in hard training. We have our own kitchen garden, herb garden and fruit trees all of which are entirely organic. We are now partially self sufficient for fruit and vegetables. What we don’t grow ourselves, we choose carefully usually from the local farmers’ market or from people we know well. Our rice is bought from a rather remote hill tribe village in the mountains. By buying rice directly from cash poor ethnic minorities we support their families. We prepare local style food with an emphasis on the use of beneficial herbs to increase its value. Our diet is calculated to best support our Kung Fu training: we understand that we are what we eat.
Food prepared on site is as fresh, organic and healthy as possible and is usually delicious local Thai or Shan style, or occasionally Chinese or southern Thai style.
Meals start with one or two types of fruit and usually some salad. We then typically serve two main dishes with rice. Most dishes are vegetarian but we do serve meat. There will always be at least one vegan dish as part of each meal. We also try our best to cater for specialist diets.
We supply breakfast daily and evening meals on training days. Drinking water is supplied free with meals and is available from the kitchen free of charge at any time for resident students.
We also serve specialist teas 2 – 4 times a day. Either high quality Chinese tea – something integrally connected with Kung Fu training – or herbal tea for health benefts.
The instructors eat in the dining area, together with the students, which is testimony to the quality of the food and helps provide a good ethos for the school. Meal times are therefore ideal for discussing Kung Fu and asking questions.
Almost any style of food can be purchased in Pai, (Italian, western, middle eastern, Chinese, Indian etc). The local diet is based mainly around rice, meat, fresh-water fish, vegetables, fruit and spices. However, seafood is relatively expensive in the mountains. Local fruit and vegetables are great, fresh and very cheap.
Diets that we can cater for:
The more specialised the diet, the less variety there will tend to be.
Diets that we can not cater for:
High protein (body building)
Severe nut allergy.
If you feel that you need a lot of extra protein to facilitate muscle growth we suggest bringing a protein supplement.
We do not supply lunches. Most of our students prefer to choose their own lunch from the wide variety on sale in the town. Since we draw students from a very wide variety of countries and cultures the food that we serve will be different from what many people are used to. Choosing a lunch that they are used to seems to be very helpful for man of the people who have recently arrived.
We do have a student fridge available to store food so if you do not wish to go to town every lunch time no problem. It is also very easy to ask someone to buy you a lunch from the town. Many people choose to eat fruit for lunch, a choice influenced by the abundance of high quality local fruit available very cheaply.
We are extremely proud of our small farm! There is something incredibly rewarding about watching your food grow, picking it, and finally eating it. It also ensures that the food is absolutely as fresh as possible, naturally ripened and free of any harmful chemicals.
We are growing:
Aubergines, gourds, a variety of greens, cucumbers, pumpkins, winter melons, green beans, Chinese radish, dill, carrots, sweetcorn, bamboo shoots.
Moringa, ginger, Thai ginger, lemon grass, holy basil, sweet basil, coriander, turmeric / curcumin, blue pea, mint, aloe vera, eucalyptus, black pepper,
Mangoes bananas, papaya, red dates, passion fruit, jackfruit, oranges, pomelos, limes, cafir limes, lum yai, Thai custard apples, tamarind, pineapple, guava, pomegranate.
Trees which we have planted but which have not yet borne fruit: durian, avocado, egg fruit, coconut, star fruit, rambutan, lychee, snake fruit,
Our garden is expanding all the time so expect to see even more things growing when you arrive!
Because we grow our food naturally, the supply is seasonal. Different fruits and vegetables come into season at different times of the year. September – October are perhaps the most prolific months. The hot, dry season in March – April yields the least.