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“Fun and Delicious” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Alma de mi Tierra Cooking School

Alma de mi Tierra Cooking School
Aldama # 205 Jalatlaco, Oaxaca 68080, Mexico
877 234-4706
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Owner description: Alma de Mi Tierra offers day cookery classes. Nora Valencia is a native of Oaxaca and passes on time honored recipes and techniques and some new ones of her own to her enthusiastic students.
Hollywood, Florida
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Fun and Delicious”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2014

Six of us siblings and in-laws took Nora's cooking class during our week in Oaxaca. We all loved it. The day started with a trip to a local market, an experience in itself. Then off to Nora's clean, beautiful home, colorfully and tastefully decorated. Nora had us all working on the food preparation, impressing us with her knowledge, skill and variety of ingredients. I can't believe I ate a flower (stuffed squash blossom...I actually had two because they were so delicious). The experience was loads of fun, the traditional Oaxacan menu delicious and the experience a highlight of our trip.

Visited March 2014
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106 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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  • Any
English first
Acton, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
“A great experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2014

Taking this class with Nora was just too much fun. Our class had almost ten people in it, each with a different cooking experience level, but Nora was able to keep everyone moving and learning together. Everyone got to participate, even though some of the more basic prep work had been done that morning or by one of her assistants. The market tour was actually educational, not just an oohing and aahing waste of a morning. Nora actually taught us a bit of Oaxacan history via her discussion of its agriculture and cuisine. I got the impression too that she really enjoyed leading the class and wasn't just speaking from a memorized script. She really listened to our questions and gave thoughtful answers.
Once in her beautiful kitchen, she kept everyone entertained and active as we prepared our delicious meal (hierbasanta consomme, salsa borracha, guacamole, marinated fish empanadas, chicken mole [not black mole, but a much more flavorful red mole], and mango mousse.) The meal was delicious and everyone got a printed copy of each recipe to take home, complete with equivalent ingredients of recipe components that might be hard to find in the US.
I would definitely take a class again!

Visited February 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kingston, Canada
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Experiencing a culture through its food.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2014

Nora Valencia is a truly wonderful guide into the intricacies of Oaxacan culture. She has deep roots in Oaxaca through the generations of cooks in her family, and through her extensive education in the best ways to transmit both her knowledge and her heritage. It's not only that she knows how to prepare traditional Oaxacan cooking, and also has the imagination to develop her own unique dishes, but she seems to have an extensive knowledge of the architectural and historical features of this area. Besides that, she is certainly an artist, and is herself a work of art!
There's one other thing I want to say, I guess. A couple of years ago I was on a so-called cooking tour run by a "celebrity", someone with a lot of glamour and a high profile. I was very disappointed, and really felt it was a fake! I learned nothing at all... it was all glamour and no depth of knowledge.

Visited February 2014
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Denver, USA
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Nora's class-a perfect experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

I can't wait to return to Oaxaca and take another cooking class with Nora (and next time I will also arrange to take a food tour of the surrounding villages with her). The class I did take -- a morning-afternoon class at her home was absolutely fantastic. I have taken cooking classes in many locations when I travel, and this was by far the best class I've ever taken. As others have said, we began with a shopping visit to the local food market, cooked/talked/laughed/learned a great deal while preparing an elaborate multi-course meal at her gorgeous home, and then enjoyed a wonderful meal in her dining room together. I appreciated so much about Nora's approach--aside from her great skill and personal warmth, I found her discussions of food history fascinating (e.g, she explained how corn came to be used in northern Italy). Plotting another trip now--so much more I want to learn from Nora!

Visited February 2014
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Baltimore, Maryland
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Even better than expected”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2014

Nora limits group size to make a more intimate experence. We met at her parents' B&B, went to a wonderful neighrbhd mrkt to buy our day's ingredients, & began our lessons. We learned about foods before us & chatted with vendors. Wonderful. Then walked to her exquisite home. You don't watch. You cook! As you chop, Nora teaches culture, food prep and wonderful tricks. After preparing a complete meal, we sat in her dining room (unrushed) to enjoy our labors. Our experience was so superb, we arranged a day of travel with Nora (also a certified guide) to Tlacolula, Teotitlan del Valle, area churches and unexpected barbacoa. Don't miss the experience!

Visited January 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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