Sunshine Thammarin brightens the Mission with convivial Thai cooking classes

“When I first moved to San Francisco, my friends always wanted to go out to Thai restaurants, but I refused—the food never tasted as good as I remembered it from home.”

That’s Ranida Thammarin, aka Sunshine, who’s shedding light on authentic Thai cooking from her home kitchen, in a converted church in the Mission.

Her story begins in 2006, when Thammarin, who was working an unfulfilling gig as a financial planner in Thailand, had just experienced a breakup.

Papaya salad is among the classic recipes.(Megan Cheek)

“There’s a very romantic movie from the ’90s about a Thai couple living in San Francisco,” she laughs. “The girl comes to San Francisco to find her boyfriend. I had just gone through a breakup, so I decided I should move to San Francisco, too!”

And so,

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