Over the years of my travel, whether on yoga retreat in the mountains of Oaxaca or in Petra, Jordan, my most satisfying experiences have involved exchanging knowledge with or cooking and marketing with the people of the country. In Bali, I rented a house in Ubud in the middle of a rice field from a family that owns two restaurants catering to the tourist in town. I showed them how to make spicy marinara sauce so that they don't have to buy expensive Ragu bottles from supermarkets.
In the morning, take I took a ride on their jeep to the market and afterward we would cook in their kitchen, to create some Ikan Bilis, a traditional fish curry made of candle nuts, along with all styles of Satay sauces.
So on your next travel, take a class, and go right into the kitchen if one of the meals you had wows you; don’t be shy to volunteer and get your hands dirty.