Today, as every fourth Thursday of November, Thanksgiving is being celebrated in the USA as one of the most important holidays in the year. Thanksgiving Day is the mother of all feasts in the USA when family and friends gather together for a special meal.
If you are a B1 or a B2 student and you have been invited to a Thanksgiving meal, I am sure you will find yourself at some point talking about FOOD AND COOKING. And then your mind will probably start thinking: “what on earth can I say about cooking?” Maybe you don´t even like cooking!
Well, don´t worry! You can actually sound very “professional and convincing” if you just add a few interesting words to your vocabulary, which you can just drop “here and there” pretending you are the best “chef” in the world.
When you are asked if you like cooking, you can say “Oh yes! I do”, or just say “not really, but my “mum, wife, husband, or granny loves cooking”, and then from here you can plunge into the conversation using your new vocabulary. For example:
- It´s amazing how American families get together to prepare such a large meal every November. Turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie and this delicious cranberry sauce! My family always gets together for a barbecue in the summer and we serve pork chops, lamb chops and sausages.
- My favourite dish is my uncle´s roast beef, which he makes in the oven but I must admit that your roasted turkey is really juicy
- I sometimes cook in the microwave, or I use the grill. It´s much healthier.
- I prefer boiled eggs to fried eggs.
- Since he saw the famous cooking competition on TV, my husband uses the best saucepans and frying pans in the market!
And if you want to describe food, keep away from the easy word “nice” and try using words like:
- This pumpkin pie is delicious!
- I love trying new food, especially if it is spicy.
- This gravy is really tasty!
- There are so many ice-cream flavours, that I can´t make up my mind on one.
- The pasta I ate yesterday was Maybe it was off.
- I prefer homemade food. It´s healthier.
Now let´s talk about “your favourite food”. I know most of us will say “pizza” or “spaghetti” or even “paella”. But why not be brave and say other things (even though it is not really true). For example
- My parents love sea food, so once a week we go out for lunch and have prawns, mussels and other kinds of sea food.
- I love cooking I make a great vegetarian dish with onions, mushrooms, courgettes and aubergines.
- My daughter loves fruit, so I make a fruit salad with grapes, pears, plums and strawberries. I also add lemon juice and brown sugar.
- My favourite dish is “gazpacho” which is a typical Spanish dish. It ´s actually a cold soup made with the following ingredients: tomatoes, a cucumber, garlic, and a green pepper. They also add salt, oil and vinegar. I love to eat it in the summer!
Well, after all this food vocabulary, I am really getting hungry! I had better go and cook something for tonight´s dinner. But let me just remind you of something before we go: A person who cooks is “A COOK” and NOT “a cooker”!