TheLoneRider
a seeker in search of Easter Eggs
Recipes

BAKING blogs

1st, 2nd, 3rd Rising?

In nearly all the baking videos I've watched that uses yeast, no one talks about 1st, 2nd or 3rd rising. I'm old school and sticking to my old ways of baking through several risings with the appropriate ingredients added accordingly - 1st rising (sponge: milk, flour, sugar and yeast. This small portion will tell me if my yeast is still good. If not, then I don't have to throw away the whole batch) to 2nd rising (adding everything else except the filling) to 3rd rising (adding the fillings) - a departure from how others do it.

Philip Heyer, AklayThis method was taught to me by Philip Heyer (aka Aklay), a Michelin-rated French chef who used to be the pastry chef to the Sultan of Brunei. But Philip taught me this for baking regular bread. I don't know if it still applies to pastry or cake. But doing it this way has always come out right for me, so I'm sticking to it.




Making German Stollen Bread Sep 9, 2021

Making German Stollen Bread

Location Google Map: Nawa Saraan Kitchen, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Recipe Sources:
Babish Culinary Universe by Babish
The Daring Gourmet by Kimberly Killebrew

Memories of Danang, Vietnam
When I was in Danang, Vietnam in 2018, I came upon M.Z. German Delicatessen, a German deli owned and operated by Michael Zangl, an amiable Master Craftsman in Germany. The deli sells traditional German Christmas bread - Stollen Bread, other European breads and deli cut meats. The Stollen bread was love at first bite. The taste resembled a fruit cake, but this one was sweeter and breadier. It also had that X-factor I couldn't put my finger on. I left Danang since, but Stollen Bread never left me.

Unattainable?
Frustrated over its scarcity (only German bakeries sell them and only during Christmas) and price (Stollen is always pricey for good reason), it was tempting to just walk away and remove it from memory. But every now and then, I would be taunted by anything that even remotely reminds me of it - like doing the Kipferl German cookies. I now live in a hotel with a fully functioning bakery. What's stopping me from making my own Stollen Bread? It'll be "my precious".

Making German Stollen Bread
suffered long and hard for this Stollen Bread....my precious!

Ingredients
When I first saw the long list of ingredients, some of them to be homemade, it was daunting. I was overwhelmed. If there was Stollen bread to be bought elsewhere, I would have just bought one. Since I could prepare some components ahead of time, I staggered my preparation accordingly - I didn't rush it. First, I worked on making the candied citrus peels. Then I soaked it on rum together with raisins and almond slivers. Next, I prepared the dough - sans Marzipan. Doing the Marzipan recipe took much longer since I had to get a blender replacement - it delayed the project by weeks. Staggering it made it fun instead of overpowering. I salivated in eager anticipation of the first bite.

MAKE THE FOLLOWING RECIPES AHEAD OF TIME

Marzipan Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups very finely ground blanched almond
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon food grade rose water
  • 1 egg white

Preparation:

  1. Place the almond flour and powdered sugar in a food processor and pulse until combined and any lumps are broken up. Add the almond extract and rose water and pulse to combine. Add the egg white and process until a thick dough is formed. If the mass is still too wet and sticky, add more powdered sugar and ground almonds. Keep in mind that it will become firmer after it's been refrigerated.
  2. Turn the almond marzipan out onto a work surface and knead it a few times. Form it into a log, wrap it up in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  3. Will keep for at least a month in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer. Bring to room temperature before using in any recipe.
  4. Makes 1 3/4 cups of marzipan or almond paste

Candied Citrus Peel Recipe (should yield 2/3 cups candied citrus peel. You could also just buy this in a bakery supply shop)

Ingredients:

  • 3 oranges and 4 lemons (or anything citrusy - grapefruit, calamansi, lime), soaked in baking soda solution
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • brown sugar for coating

Preparation:

  1. peeling - peel the fruits being careful not to include the fruit flesh and the bitter white pith. A thin layer of pith is ok as no pith makes the peel leathery and tough. Cut into slivers or Julien.
  2. removing the bitterness - Boil the peels in a pot of water for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse. Boil, drain and rinse again until the bitterness is gone.
  3. candy-ing - stir and melt the sugar in the water and boil. Add the citrus peels and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the peels become translucent and the liquid sugar becomes syrupy - could be an hour.
  4. sugar coating - strain to remove excess sugar syrup (that is a very flavorful syrup you can use for coffee or cocoa drinks). Put the peels in a tupperware of brown sugar and shake to coat.
  5. drying - instead of dry racking, I simply spread the peels on a wide container to cool. When cooled down, I put it in the fridge to dehydrate overnight or even 24 hours.
  6. rum soaking - When dehydrated, I simply add it to the raisin/almond/rum mixture to soak in rum as well. Add rum to make sure they remain below the surface.
  7. Note: Since they are soaked in rum, they will contain a lot of liquid. Strain them overnight before mixing them to the dough. There should be as little liquid as possible. Excess liquid on the dough will alter the moisture/solid ratio.

Raisin & Almond Mixture

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup blanched slivered or sliced almonds , finely chopped
  • enough rum to cover raisins and almonds

Preparation:

  1. soak raisins and almonds in the rum for a few days to fully absorb
  2. add the candied citrus peel to the raisin-almond-rum mixture. Make sure there is enough rum to cover mixture. You can let it sit for a few days to absorb
  3. Note: Since they are soaked in rum, they will contain a lot of liquid. Strain them overnight before mixing them to the dough. There should be as little liquid as possible. Excess liquid on the dough will alter the moisture/solid ratio.

Dough Ingredients:
(for ease and consistency, I've converted the ounces to cups)

Glaze & Dusting Ingredients:

Preparation:

  1. First Rising (creating the sponge/poolish) - on a warm bowl, place 1 cup lukewarm coconut cream/milk, sugar, 1 cup flour and yeast. Whisk to create a thick soupy mixture. Cover for one hour until the mixture gets frothy with bubbles. You now have the sponge/poolish.
  2. Second Rising (adding all the ingredients except the filling [marzipan]) - add the following to the coconut milk mixture: remaining 3 cups of flour, 1 egg, 2 egg yolks, softened butter, lemon zest, salt, vanilla extract, cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg. Last, add the rum-soaked raisin/almond/citrus peel mixture to the batter (do not add excess rum....drink it instead. Adding the excess rum will upset the liquid to flour ratio). Start kneading either by hand or stand mixer (with a dough hook). Stop when it becomes a soft dough ball (but not sticky). Leave it on the bowl, ladle a tablespoon of oil on top of the dough ball and cover for an hour - it should double in size.
  3. Third Rising (scaling/dividing, adding the filling [marzipan] and shaping) - Punch down the dough to remove the air. Place the dough on a floured working area and divide in 4 pieces (or 2 equal halves - up to you) . Shape the dough into an elongated oval shape and press down until flat, about 1/2 inch thick. Roll the 4 marzipan the same length of the oval dough and place on the middle of the dough, slightly pressing down. With the dough facing you horizontally, fold the upper half of the dough to cover the marzipan - the lip of the upper half should be placed halfway between the marzipan and the lip of the lower half (or just watch the video...it's a little complicated to explain). Do the same thing to the lower half of the dough. The marzipan should be fully covered by now - but should not be in a 'straight jacket'. Press the ends of the dough to cover the ends of the marzipan. Slightly press down on the dough but not where the marzipan is. This way, the hump created by the marzipan is seen. Place the 4 doughs on the baking sheet where they will be baked. Optionally, you can dot the exposed raisins with cooking oil (not butter since butter easily burns too) to prevent burning during the baking. Cover with cling wrap and leave for about an hour until it doubles in size. This is the 3rd and final rising. The dough is now ready for baking.

    Note: you can also make any number of smaller loaves. Maybe you have a few people you want to gift it to.
  4. Baking - About 10 minutes before the end of the last rise, preheat the oven to 350°F and bake the stollen for 35-45 minutes or until sounding hollow when tapped. Remove from oven and let it cool down for 5 minutes.
  5. Glazing - Poke the bread all over with a toothpick until you make about 50 holes/dough. Brush liberally with melted butter. The butter seeps into the holes to make the inside buttery-delicious.
  6. Dusting - While still wet with the butter, dust the bread generously with sugar using a strainer or sifter. The bread should resemble a snow-covered submarine. Let it cool completely.
  7. Aging - The Stollen is ready for eating. But for best results, age it to let the rum flavor, citrus peel and spices inundate the entire Stollen. Wrap in plastic bag making sure excess air is removed from the plastic - you can even suck from the end of the plastic bag to create a vacuum. For longer storage, keep frozen.
  8. Serving - best to serve Stollen (cold, room temp or warm, up to you) in thin slices + piping hot coffee.
Making German Stollen Bread
Tom and Simona were the first to have a slice of the Stollen Bread

Ending Thoughts
Whoa!!! This preparation is epic. Usually, when I do a project like this, I offer to sell a small portion to select friends. Not this time. There was too much blood, sweat and tears in doing this for money to change hands. However, these same select friends will get a slice (some thicker than others...LOL) while one guy gets a full loaf (if you don't know who I'm talking about, then it means we're not close). For the most part of the Stollen, it'll remain....my precious!

Thank you Simona for the support. Thank you Colleen for the rose water.

--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
YOGA by Gigit Yoga by Gigit | Learn English Learn English | Travel like a Nomad Nomad Travel Buddy | Donation Bank Donation Bank for TheLoneRider

Gallery

Preparation Video:



Reader Comments:

pamela mariko robinsonPamela USA
(Sep 16, 2021) ...full flavored/full bodied with good depth and richness and just the perfect amount of sweetness

Tom MaherTom USA
Tom Maher Tom Maher
(Sep 11, 2021) Wow, lots of prep involved indeed! I appreciate being able to taste all of the hard work that went into this bread 🙂

David LloydDavid Australia
CRAZY WORLD OF DAVID
(Sep 11, 2021) What can I say? Mind-boggling prep, still very tempting, alas no oven, phew that will save me a stack of work!

GigitGigit
(Sep 11, 2021) Yes, the preparation is recipes nested within the main recipe....quite daunting, but modesty aside, it's worth all the effort.

Leave a comment?

Next Recipe:

Kombucha: 2nd Batch recipes

Kombucha: 2nd Batch

(Sep 11, 2021) The first fermentation from a gifted scoby went like clockwork with a minor tweak. It was time to transfer the kombucha to individual bottles for the 2nd fermentation, and to make another batch.....more »»

Next Pastry:
Swedish Cinnamon Rolls [Kanelbullar] recipes

Swedish Cinnamon Rolls [Kanelbullar]

(Oct 4, 2021) My first dabble in cinnamon rolls was in New York when someone gave me a Cinnabon - a multi-national chain selling the very popular cinnamon rolls. Like stollen bread, it was epiphany - love at first bite. Somehow, none of the subsequent cinnamon rolls I've tasted compared to Cinnabon. That was my benchmark. Now, since I'd been on a baking roll here at my digs at Nawa Saraan in Chiang Mai where I have a fully functioning bakery at my disposal, I'm rolling up my sleeve to sink my teeth into that Swedish tradition, Kannelbullar, or cinnamon rolls.....more »»

Chiang Mai INFORMATION

Chiang Mai Map
Google Map

Chiang Mai, Thailand

important places in Chiang Mai IMPORTANT PLACES
Chiang Mai Bus Station Bus Station
Chiang Mai Train Station Train Station
Chiang Mai airport Chiang Mai International Airport
Nong Buak Hard Park Nong Buak Hard Park - free yoga classes daily

hotels in Chiang Mai HOTEL
Chiang Mai Arun Dara Villa Arun Dara Villa - 7 exclusive rooms, 1 swimming pool for every room, grand opening
Chiang Mai Nawa Sheeva Hotel Nawa Sheeva Hotel - big rooms, high ceiling, salt-water pool, restaurant, cafe
Chiang Mai Nawa Saraan Hotel Nawa Saraan Hotel - low density (4 spacious rooms), stone garden setting, Koi fish pond, Old City location
Arun Suite, Chiang Mai Arun Suite - 3 bedrooms in a 3-storie guesthouse within Old City, ideal for families

birds nest restaurants in Chiang Mai RESTAURANT
La Pizza Chiang Mai La Pizza Chiang Mai - Italian pizza, pasta, wine, dessert, coffee
Chiang Mai birds nest restaurant Natural Bird Nest by Burapa - authentic bird's nest soup

Thai massage in Chiang Mai WELLNESS
ITM – International Training Massage School ITM - International Training Massage School - Chiang Mai's most prestigious massage school
Float Chiang Mai Float Chiang Mai - sensory deprivation float pod
Chiang Mai, Royal Thai Lanna Massage Zira Spa - upscale authentic Thai massage and spa treatment

motorcycle rental in Chiang Mai MOTORBIKE RENTAL
Chiang Mai birds nest motorcycle Tawan Bike - motorcycle rental | +66 91 635 2863 | Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200



Chiang Mai FYI / Tips
  • crop-burning season in Chiang Mai is between late Feb to early April. But laws change everytime. This year, 2019, there is a 61-day ban on burning so the farmers started burning early. When my plane was approaching Chiang Mai on Jan 24, 2019, there was already a thick blanket of smog covering the entire city (and beyond). But within the city itself, you won't feel it (but that doesn't mean the air is healthy). To monitor air conditions in real time, refer to site: Chiang Mai Air Pollution: Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI)
  • hot season begins March and lasts until June
  • wet season begins July and lasts until September
  • best time to visit Chiang Mai is mid-September to mid-February - after the monsoon and before the burning
  • you have to try Khao Soi, this is north Thailand's culinary staple
  • the tourist area where most of the hotels, restaurants, ticket offices, tour operators are, is located in the Old City
  • to exchange your dollars to Thai Baht, the Super Rich Money Exchange give the best rates. There are many branches scattered around Chiang Mai
  • get a red cab (songthao) outside the train station for Baht 50 (instead of paying B100 if inside the train station) to Old City - if you haggle nicely enough...I did!
  • shared red taxi (songthao) - B30 standard fare plying all over Old City
  • for only B50/day, best to rent a bike to go around the Old City - it's a 2.5km2 with lots to discover
  • FREE daily yoga classes from 9:00am to 10:15am at Nong Buak Hard Park (southwest corner of Old City). Resident and passing-through teachers take turns conducting yoga classes.
Blues/Jazz Bars in Chiang Mai
  1. North Gate Jazz Coop - at Chang Phueg Gate, great Tuesday jam session, Blues on Sundays at 11pm by the Chiang Mai Blues band
  2. Boy Blues Bar - at the Night Bazaar. Mondays at 9:30pm is open mic
  3. My Secret Cafe - near Wat Phra Singh. Tuesdays at 7:30pm for the changing front-act and 9:00pm for the Panic Band
  4. Taphae East - 88 Thapae Rd. (just north of Night Bazaar). Fridays at 9:30pm by Chiang Mai Blues Band
Chiang Mai Cost Index
  • B60 Chiang beer
  • B250 1 hour drop-in yoga session
  • B200 one hour Thai body massage at WAYA Massage (highly recommended)
  • B50 noodle soup with meat
  • B50 coffee
  • B40 pad thai
  • B30/kilo wash-only laundry
  • B50/kilo wash+iron laundry
  • B100-150 dorm bed/night
  • B250 fan room/night
  • B30 internet cafe/hour
  • B170-190 Movies Sat-Sun and public holidays
  • B130-150 Movies weekdays
  • B100 Movies Wednesdays (movie discount day)
  • B750 1/2 day Thai cooking lessons
  • B900-1000 1 full day Thai cooking lessons
  • B400 Muay Thai boxing ticket
  • B2500 starting room rate at the luxury hotel, Nawa Sheeva (highly recommended)

  • Transportation
  • B450 bus, Chiang Mai to Bangkok
  • B160-180 bus, Chiang Mai to Pai
  • B1250 bus, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B1650 slow boat, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B210 bus, Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, 3-4 hours
  • B360 Green VIP bus, Chiang Mai to Mae Sai (Thai border town for visa run to Tachileik, Myanmar)
  • B50 bicycle rental, 24 hours
  • B200 motorbike rental, 24 hours
  • B273 #51 sleeping train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B638 #7 a/c train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B50 red taxi fare from point to point
  • B100 red taxi fare from train terminal to city

  • Tours
  • B2000 full day elephant sanctuary
  • B750 Chiang Rai one-day tour
  • B1500 mountain biking scenic ride
Chiang Mai Trains by Train36.com
  1. Chiang Mai trains for Bangkok - 2 day trains, 3 night trains, daily schedule
  2. Train 14 to Bangkok - departs 5pm daily, arrives BKK 6:15am, 1st class and 2nd class sleeping accomodation, Special Express
  3. Chiang Mai trains to other destinations -
Bangkok to Chiang Mai by Train from Bang Sue Train Station

For more train info: Bangkok to Chiang Mai trains - departing from Hua Lamphong - MRT (Bangkok)

(I'm using Bang Sue as a starting point because I was closer to it, but you may be closer to the Hua Lamphong station)

  1. take the MRT train to Bang Sue Station. Take the #1 Exit to the north provincial trains
  2. Proceed to Counter 2. You will see an information booth, a train schedule chart and the ticket counter. Choose the train and pay at the ticket counter.
  3. daily train schedule:
    • 8:48am - #7 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:30pm, not sleeper, B638
    • 2:06pm - #109 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 4:05am, sleeper
    • 6:31pm - #9 Premium Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:15am, sleeper, B938 upper deck, B1038 lower deck
    • 7:56pm - #13 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 8:40am, sleeper, B768 upper deck, B838 lower deck
    • 10:22pm - #51 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 12:10pm, sleeper, 3rd class B270 (non sleeper), 2nd class B438, B728 upper deck, B798 lower deck
Loei to Chiang Mai by Bus
  1. From Loei town center, take a tuk-tuk ride to the bus station, B30. There is only one bus station.
  2. As of June 28, 2020 (still on Covid schedule), there are only 3 night trips: 8:30pm, 9:30pm and 12 midnight. 9 hours, B470.
  3. The bus makes the following stops at the following times from a 9pm Loei departure: Phu Ruea (9:50pm), Phitsanulok (12:40am), Uttradit (2:20am), Lampang (4:35am)
  4. Final bus stop is at the Red Bus Arcade, Chiang Mai, 9 hour-trip, arriving 6am (from 9pm Loei departure).
  5. Take a red songthaew to Old City, B50. They'll try to charge you B100, but they'll take B50 (just assure the driver you won't tell the other passengers).
Chiangmai Blogs by TheLoneRider
  1. 2021: A Year in Review Dec 31, 2021
  2. Chiang Mai Peoplescape (Nov-Dec 2021) Dec 31, 2021
  3. Watering the Plants Hands-Free Dec 12, 2021
  4. Vietnamese Phin Coffee Filter Dec 2, 2021
  5. Tummo Yoga Dec 1, 2021
  6. The Bliss of Inner Fire: Book Summary/Review Dec 1, 2021
  7. The Bliss of Inner Fire: Heart Practice of the Six Yogas of Naropa Dec 1, 2021
  8. 'Must Experience' Cafés of Chiang Mai Nov 30, 2021
  9. British Hobnob Cookies Nov 22, 2021
  10. New York Cheese Cake Nov 22, 2021
  11. Pizza Nite with Simona and Nat Nov 11, 2021
  12. Stepping Forward / Reaching Out Oct 31, 2021
  13. Cancel Culture Attack Oct 31, 2021
  14. Mantra Primer Oct 29, 2021
  15. Spinal Mobility Oct 7, 2021
  16. Swedish Cinnamon Rolls [Kanelbullar] Oct 4, 2021
  17. Just Bring 2 Chinese Oct 3, 2021
  18. One-Leg Yoga Asana Sequences Sep 30, 2021
  19. Pizza Nite with Nut, Monika and Yuki Sep 27, 2021
  20. 23-Minute Ice Bath Sep 27, 2021
  21. Pizza Nite with Nut, Simona and Malee Sep 23, 2021
  22. Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep) Sep 23, 2021
  23. Making Cornbread Sep 15, 2021
  24. Kombucha: 2nd Batch Sep 11, 2021
  25. Making German Stollen Bread Sep 9, 2021
  26. Pizza Nite with Jackson, Goi and Paapu Sep 6, 2021
  27. Chiang Mai Peoplescape Aug 31, 2021
  28. Making Homemade Kombucha Aug 30, 2021
  29. Wrong Question to Ask This Crowd Aug 29, 2021
  30. Pizza Nite with Tom, Chunyah and Goi Aug 20, 2021
  31. Pizza Nite with Moms and Kids Aug 15, 2021
  32. Bahya Kumbhaka (breath-hold on the exhale) Aug 14, 2021
  33. Everybody's Only Friend Aug 13, 2021
  34. Vanillekipferl (German Vanilla Crescent Cookies) Aug 11, 2021
  35. Fighting Infection through Yoga Aug 3, 2021
  36. Too Close for Friendship Aug 2, 2021
  37. Manifesting: Epicurus' Pursuit Jul 31, 2021
  38. Homemade Rum Raisin Ice Cream Jul 30, 2021
  39. Ice Bath at Nawa Saraan Healing Space Jul 25, 2021
  40. Pizza Nite + Slack Line + Hammock Jul 23, 2021
  41. Yin-Yoga & Hypnosis with Christine Thiel Jul 20, 2021
  42. Pizza Nite with James and Nat Jul 19, 2021
  43. Antara Kumbhaka on Nadi Shodan Pranayama: Yogic Breath-Hold on the Inhale Jul 17, 2021
  44. Moving and Cashing-Out Bitcoin Jun 2 - Jul 11, 2021
  45. Hatha Yoga: Controlling the Switch Jul 7, 2021
  46. Yoga Classes with Calum Mar 27 - Jul 4, 2021
  47. Hike to Wat Pa Thammachat Waterfall Jul 2, 2021
  48. Pizza Brunch with the Yogis July 1, 2021
  49. Continuing Friendships in Chiang Mai Jun 30, 2021
  50. On the Brink of Hunger, the ENABLERS Come to Light Jun 21, 2021
  51. Hatha Vinyasa Yoga with Katharine Day Jun 17, 2021
  52. Pranayama Basics II Jun 16, 2021
  53. 36-Hour Love Life Jun 11, 2021
  54. Pranayama Basics I Jun 9, 2021
  55. Biohackers Meetup in Chiang Mai Jun 6, 2021
  56. Learning How to Breathe Jun 2, 2021
  57. Not the Usual Day-to-Day Life May 31, 2021
  58. Morphing Peoplescape of Chiang Mai May 31, 2021
  59. Breathwork & Ice Bath with Jason Ryer of Zen Strength May 23, 2021
  60. It's Raining Bell Peppers May 7, 2021
  61. Yoga Classes with Nana Apr 20, 2021
  62. You Want to be Wonder Woman? Apr 8, 2021
  63. Kunjal Kriya / Vamana Dhauti (induced vomiting) Apr 1, 2021
  64. Coffeemates, Breadmates and Yogamates in Chiang Mai Jan-Mar 2021
  65. Varisara Dhauti (cleansing of the entire digestive tract) Mar 26, 2021
  66. Spiritual Backpacker Interview by Napasorn 'Cherry' Suvarnapradip Mar 23, 2021
  67. Private One-on-One Yoga Classes with Doriana Feb 17 - Mar 14, 2021
  68. Transformational Life Events Mar 13, 2021
  69. Guess Who's Coming to Bread Day? Mar 1, 2021
  70. Mula Shodhana (anal cleansing) Feb 27, 2021
  71. Are You My Queen? Feb 25, 2021
  72. Breaking the 5-Minute Breath-hold Barrier Feb 25, 2021
  73. Kirtan with Chiang Mai's Khun Thai Seekers Feb 7, 2021
  74. Breaking the 4-minute Breath-hold Feb 7, 2021
  75. Pranayama Primer Feb 2, 2021
  76. Heartbreak in every Song Jan 24, 2021
  77. The Silent Killer is Baaack! Jan 12, 2021
  78. Learning the Thai Language Jan 9, 2021
  79. 2020: A Year in Review Dec 31, 2020
  80. Reversing/Slowing Down the Aging Process Dec 30, 2020
  81. Hike to Huay Keaw Waterfall Dec 20, 2020
  82. Yoga Mat Dec 19, 2020
  83. Hiking to Wat Pha Lat along the Monk's Trail Dec 19, 2020
  84. Are You Psycho? Dec 9, 2020
  85. Muffin Man Dec 8, 2020
  86. Polyamory Dec 4, 2020
  87. The Wim Hof Ice Bath Dec 3, 2020
  88. RSVP Nov 25, 2020
  89. High Intensity Interval Yoga (Yoga + HIIT) Nov 14, 2020
  90. Cleansing the Nadis (Energy Pathway) Nov 13, 2020
  91. Yoga for a 360-degree Core Nov 6, 2020
  92. Edward Witten: 'the smartest living physicist' Nov 4, 2020
  93. Srinivasa Ramanujan: Mathematician of the Divine Oct 27, 2020
  94. Bashar as Channeled by Darryl Anka Oct 26, 2020
  95. Vinyasa Krama and Ashtanga Yoga with Aida Yoga Oct 18, 2020
  96. Deepak Chopra: author, lecturer, healer Oct 12, 2020
  97. Facebook Friends Oct 1, 2020
  98. Chiang Mai Peoplescape Aug-Sep 2020 Sep 30, 2020
  99. Siddhis (yogic super powers) Sep 30, 2020
  100. Learning the Import/Export Trade Sep 4, 2020
  101. Music and Magic at Justin's Birthday Bash Sep 3, 2020
  102. Biggest Stone in his Shoe Sep 1, 2020
  103. Abandoned Aug 25, 2020
  104. Intelligent Romantic Break-up Aug 25, 2020
  105. Dad-Zoned Aug 18, 2020
  106. Public Display of Affection Aug 9, 2020
  107. Gabriella's Birthday Bash at Mothership Resort Aug 8-9, 2020
  108. Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020
  109. Yoga Class for Strength and Muscle Jul 30, 2020
  110. Yoga Class for Optimum Digestion July 29, 2020
  111. Yoga Class for Healthy Eyes Jul 27, 2020
  112. Hippie Night at Nawa Saraan Healing Space July 24, 2020
  113. The Podcast Series: Alan "Heart Math" Strydom Jul 17, 2020
  114. Prana Vayu Adhitthana Yoga Class July 11-12, 2020
  115. Coming Back to Chiang Mai Jun 29, 2020
  116. Goodbye Chiang Mai Jan 23, 2020
  117. Prasnopanishad: Understanding Prana Jan 17, 2020
  118. Hiking the Monk's Trail Jan 15, 2020
  119. Chaturanga Jan 10, 2020
  120. You Spooned Me Jan 3, 2020
  121. 2019: A Year in Review Dec 31, 2019
  122. Friends, Coffeemates and Breadmates (Dec 2019) Dec 31, 2019
  123. Visiting Mae Sot Dec 27-30, 2019
  124. Let's Make it About You - an Epiphany Dec 17, 2019
  125. Shut-Up! Dec 7, 2019
  126. Roasted Red Bell Pepper Puree Dec 3, 2019
  127. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Nov 2019) Nov 30, 2019
  128. Bhujangini Mudra Nov 25, 2019
  129. Mathangini Mudra Nov 24, 2019
  130. Kaka Mudra Nov 23, 2019
  131. Pasini Mudra Nov 20, 2019
  132. Aswini Mudra Nov 18, 2019
  133. Sambhavi Mudra Nov 16, 2019
  134. Manduka Mudra Nov 15, 2019
  135. Tataka Mudra Nov 14, 2019
  136. Sakti Calana Mudra Nov 10, 2019
  137. Vajroli Mudra Nov 9, 2019
  138. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Oct 2019) Oct to Nov 5, 2019
  139. Yoni Mudra Nov 1, 2019
  140. Viparita Karani Mudra Oct 31, 2019
  141. Khecari Mudra Oct 30, 2019
  142. Mahadeva Mudra Oct 28, 2019
  143. Sacred Cacao - Chakra Dance Journey Oct 26, 2019
  144. Partner Healing with Natascha Oct 24, 2019
  145. Maha Bandha Mudra Oct 24, 2019
  146. Point-Of-Failure Birthday Workout Oct 22, 2019
  147. Mula Bandha Mudra Oct 21, 2019
  148. Hugfest at Thapae Gate, Chiang Mai Oct 19, 2019
  149. Anushasan Mudra Oct 18, 2019
  150. Ling Mudra Oct 17, 2019
  151. Jalandhara Bandha Mudra Oct 15, 2019
  152. Learning Thai with Cee Oct 13, 2019
  153. Uddiyana Bandha Mudra Oct 10, 2019
  154. Nabho Mudra Oct 9, 2019
  155. Maha Mudra Oct 7, 2019
  156. 20 Essential Mudras by T. Krishnamacharya Oct. 6, 2019
  157. Mindfulness Gong Bath by Vee (Veerayuth Pongsiri) Oct 3, 2019
  158. Cuddle Party by Abundant Love CM Oct 1, 2019
  159. Vayu Mudra Oct 1, 2019
  160. Visa-Run to Tachileik, Myanmar Sep 28, 2019
  161. Sankalpa Mudra Sep 27, 2019
  162. Surya Pradarshini Mudra Sep 26, 2019
  163. Eye-Gazing at Heart Space Sep 20, 2019
  164. Prana Vayu (Pranic Wind) Sep 20, 2019
  165. 2-Week Yoga Challenge by Agnese Erba Sep 17, 2019
  166. The Mudra Project Sep 13, 2019
  167. Sunday Vinyasa Flow with Marina Forster Sep 8, 2019
  168. Shamanic Breathwork by Rachel Constantino Sep 4, 2019
  169. The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Aug 31, 2019
  170. Of Winos and Yogis Aug 26, 2019
  171. The 9 Jhanas of Buddha Aug 22, 2019
  172. Full Moon Ceremony at Heart Space Aug 15, 2019
  173. Yin Yoga - Water Element by Martina Barabas Aug 15, 2019
  174. Hatha Mix Yoga with Christin Aug 13, 2019
  175. Boy Blues Bar Rocks Chiang Mai Aug 5, 2019
  176. Back to my Beloved Chiang Mai Aug 1, 2019
  177. Kaleidoscope of Chiang Mai's Peoplescape July 27, 2019
  178. Secret Sunrise: Nelson Mandela International Day July 17, 2019
  179. Farewell Picnic with Alan and Nicola July 15, 2019
  180. Secret Sunrise: Water July 3, 2019
  181. Hotel Review: Arun Suite June 27, 2019
  182. Bruce Lipton: Epigentics to Transcend Genes June 24, 2019
  183. Optimizing Life thru Heart Math May 8, 15 and 22, 2019
  184. Connective Cacao and Sound Journey June 12, 2019
  185. Chiangmai BLUES June 6, 2019
  186. Hatha Slow Flow with Neil Jefferson June 3, 2019
  187. Meditating with One Million Meditators Movement June 1, 2019
  188. Vinyasa Happy Flow Series by Vaida May 31, 2019
  189. Muay Thai at the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium May 30, 2019
  190. Yoga Flow Through the 7 Chakras by Sabrina Pilz May 30, 2019
  191. The Outsiders (people you need to push out of your sacred circle) May 31, 2019
  192. Fascinating Peoplescape of Chiang Mai May 22, 2019
  193. World Meditation Day at Heart Space May 21, 2019
  194. Abs Yoga by Gigit May 12, 2019
  195. Kundalini and Vinyasa Yoga with Nicola Symons May 10, 2019
  196. Secret Sunrise Interactive Dance May 9, 2019
  197. Tok Sen Massage from Ying May 8, 2019
  198. Bruschetta: Nawa Saraan Style Apr 22, 2019
  199. Thai Cooking at Pra Nang Thai Cookery School Apr 20, 2019
  200. Bonding with the Elephants in Chiang Mai Apr 11, 2019
  201. Ziplining in Chiang Mai with Eagle Track Zipline Apr 10, 2019
  202. Getting Thai Massage from Chiang Mai's Best (Lar Thanakrit Khamtanong) Mar 21, 2019
  203. Being the Soul of Nawa Saraan Hotel Mar 18, 2019
  204. Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Jan 24 - Mar 13, 2019
  205. Curing Cancer with Yoga? Feb 21, 2019
  206. International Training Massage School (ITM): Level 1 Feb 11-15, 2019
  207. Sandesch Album Launch by Christoph Joerg Feb 13, 2019
  208. Meditation in a Sensory Deprivation Tank at Float Chiang Mai Jan 29, 2019
  209. Reiki Share at the Mastermind Brain Spa Jan 26, 2019
  210. Resuming Life in Chiang Mai Jan 24, 2019
  211. 4 Days in Chiang Mai at Nawa Saraan Hotel Jan 2-6, 2019
  212. Mike Chong Aug 8, 2018
  213. An Intimate Conversation with my Universe in Chiang Mai Aug 8, 2018
  214. Kneaded and Pampered at Zira Spa Aug 4, 2018
  215. Savoring a Baht 3,500 Birds Nest Soup at Natural Bird Nest by Burapa Aug 3, 2018
  216. Yoga Exploration at The Yoga Tree with Gernot Aug 1, 2018
  217. Laughter Yoga with Saffiya Arnous July 31, 2018
  218. Yoga with Adam at Hidden House Yoga, Chiang Mai July 29, 2018
  219. 2 Weeks in Chiang Mai July 25 - Aug 7, 2018
  220. A First Timer in Chiang Mai Apr 9-23, 2016
  221. Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape Apr 9-23, 2016
  222. Dance Mandala in Chiang Mai at The Yoga Tree Apr 19, 2016
  223. Songkran Waterfight Festival in Chiang Mai Apr 13-15, 2016
  224. Border Crossing from Siem Reap (Cambodia) to Bangkok (Thailand) to Chiang Mai April 9-10, 2016

Travel Tips for Thailand

How to Get a 60-Day Thai Tourist Visa and then Extend by another 30 Days

This process is BEFORE Covid 19. Not sure what it is now.

    60-Day Thai Tourist Visa

    NOTE: There is no need to go back to your country to get the Thai tourist visa. Any major city with a Thai Embassy will do. Apparently there is also no need to have an invitation from a Thai establishment to justify the visa.

  1. Bring the following to the Thai embassy:
    a) proof of money (bank statement will suffice)
    b) flight booking to Thailand
    c) onward flight back to your country from Thailand
    d) filled-in tourist visa form
    e) 2 passport pictures
    f) hotel booking in Thailand (they didn't ask me for this but better be safe)
    g) passport with at least 6 months validity
  2. After handing over all the documents, they will ask you to come pick your passport with the visa the following day from 4 to 5pm. That's it!
  3. NOTE: after 2 successful attempts, I was already questioned the 3rd time.

    30-Day Extension

    NOTE: When your 60-day visa is close to expiry and you want to extend your stay. No need to leave Thailand.

  1. bring the following to the Immigration Office:
    a) passport (make sure your Tourist Visa hasn't expired yet)
    b) Baht 1900
    c) photocopy of your passport + visa duration date stamp + TM6 card (white immigration card) and sign all the copies
    d) completed TM7 visa extension form (available at the Immigration Office)
    e) one 4cmx6cm passport picture
  2. submit the above to the Front Desk. They will give you a stub with your number on it. Take a seat and wait for your number to be called
  3. when your number is called, your picture will be taken. Then go back to your seat. They will call you again.
  4. when they call you again, they'll give you your passport with your extended visa. That's it!
  5. when there are no lines, the whole process can take only 10 minutes
Book Train Tickets in Thailand

Book Train Tickets in Thailand Online by Train36.com

General Travel Tips
  1. arrive early - in case there is a snag (visa snag, documentation snag, transport ticket snag, etc.), you will have ample time to troubleshoot the problem if you arrive early (to the airport, to the bus terminal, etc.)
  2. put detailed itinerary on the Calendar apps of your smart-phone according to timelines - this is where you do all your thinking and planning. Once written down, you don't have to think anymore while you are on the journey...you just follow the steps. This frees your mind for something else that might happen while you are already en route
  3. avoiding scams - as a general rule, I ignore the touts or anyone I don't know who call out to me. The calling comes in many forms - "Hi! Where are you from?", "Excuse me! Excuse me!", "Where are you going?". I don't look them in the eye and I remain non-verbal with them. If you reply to them, you just gave them an 'in' to hound you. In order not to look rude, I smile and wave the 'not interested' hand to them, without looking at them.
  4. power bank - hand-carry your power bank. Do not check it in. You can be called in when you are already inside the plane to go all the way to the loading dock so you can personally remove the power bank...and chances are, you'll have to surrender it to them. And you might delay the plane departure!
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