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II. Match the vocabulary words on the left with the definitions on the right.

1. dry a) any of various inorganic natural substances, usually. having crystalline structures and a characteristic hardness.
2. moist b) experiencing thirst; needing to drink.
3. sour c) the power or capacity for activity.
4. mineral d) somewhat wet; damp.
5. hungry e) having a sharp and unpleasant taste that is neither sour nor salty.
6. vitamin f)free from wetness, dampness, or moisture.
7. salty g) having a tart or acid taste, like that of lemon juice or vinegar.
8. thirsty h) to die or suffer from not eating and drinking.
9. energy i) having a flavor like that of sugar or honey; not bitter, salty, or sour in taste.
10. bitter j) containing salt as a flavor.
11. sweet k) any of a number of natural or synthetic substances required in human nutrition to regulate metabolism and maintain health.
12. starve l) feeling a need or desire for food.


I. Skim the text for general understanding.

About Eating Out in Britain

1. How come it is so difficult to find English food in England? In Greece you eat Greek food, in France French food, in Italy Italian food, but in England, in any High Street in the land, it is easier to find Indian and Chinese restaurants than English ones. In London you can eat Thai, Portuguese, Turkish, Japanese, Russian, Polish, Swiss, Spanish, and Italian–but where are the English restaurants?

2. It is not only in restaurants that foreign dishes are replacing traditional British food. In every supermarket, sales of pasta, pizza and poppadoms are booming. Why has this happened? What is wrong with the cooks of Britain that they prefer cooking pasta to potatoes? Why do the British choose to eat lasagna instead of shepherd’s pie?

Why do they now like cooking in wine and olive oil? But perhaps it is a good thing. After all, this is the end of 20th century and we can get ingredients from all over the world in just a few hours. Anyway, wasn’t English food always disgusting and tasteless? Wasn’t it always boiled to death and swimming in fat? The answer to these questions is a resounding “No”, but to understand this, we have to go back to before World War II.

3. The British have in fact always imported food from abroad. From the time of the Roman invasion foreign trade was a major influence on British cooking. English kitchens, like the English language, absorbed ingredients from all over the world-chickens, rabbits, apples and tea. All of these and more were successfully incorporated into British dishes. Another important influence on British cooking was of course the weather. The good old British rain gives us rich soil and green grass, and means that we are able to produce some of the finest varieties of meat, fruit and vegetables, which don’t need fancy sauces or complicated recipes to disguise their taste.

4. However, World War II changed everything. Wartime women had to forget of British cooking, learn to do without foreign imports, and ration their use of home-grown food. The Ministry of Food published cheap, boring recipes. The joke of the war was a dish called Woolton Pie (named after the Minister for Food! ). This consisted of a mixture of boiled vegetables covered in white sauce with mashed potato on the top. Britain never managed to recover from the wartime attitude to food. We were left with a loss of confidence in our cooking skills and after years of Ministry recipes we began to believe that British food was boring, and we searched the world for sophisticated, new dishes which gave hope of a better future. The British people became tourists at their own dining tables and in the restaurants of their land! This is a tragedy! Surely food is as much a part of our culture as our landscape, our language, and our literature. Nowadays, cooking British food is like as having a conversation in Anglo-Saxon English.

5. However, there is still one small ray of hope. British pubs are often the best places to eat well and cheaply in Britain, and they also increasingly try to serve tasty British food. Can we recommend to you our two favourite places to eat in Britain? The Shepherd’s Inn in Melmerby, Cumbria, and the Dolphin Inn in Kingston, Devon. Their steak and mushroom pie, Lancashire hotpot, and bread and butter pudding are three of the gastronomic wonders of the world!

Elizabeth Sharman, Across Cultures, Longman

Reading comprehension

I. In the text find the English equivalents to the following words and word combinations. Explain the following words in English. Use English-English dictionary if necessary. Make up your own sentences with these words.

хрустящая лепешка, безвкусная пища, со времен римского вторжения, объединяться/ смешиваться с чем-либо, разнообразие фруктов, обходиться без чего-либо, вареные овощи, сложные рецепты, испортить вкус, блюдо, картофельное пюре, кулинарные способности, луч надежды, чудеса гастрономии.

II. Match a paragraph 1–5 with a summary below.

a) historical and climatic influences on British cooking

b) there’s everything except an English restaurant

c) the legacy of World War II

d) where there is hope for the future

e) the British love affair with international cooking

III. Read the article more carefully. Choose the best answer, a, b or c.

1. The writers believe that British cooking…

a) has always been very bad.

b) was good until World War II.

c) is good because it is so international.

2. They say that the British…

a) eat only traditional British food in their homes.

b) don’t like cooking with foreign ingredients.

c) buy lots of foreign ingredients.

3. They say that the British weather…

a) enables the British to produce good quality food.

b) often ruins fruit and vegetables.

c) is not such an important influence on British food as foreign trade.

4. They say that World War II had a great influence on British cooking because…

a) traditional British cooking was rediscovered and some good cheap recipes were produced.

b) people had limitless supplies of home-grown food.

c) people started to believe that British food was boring, so after the war they wanted to cook more interesting and international dishes.

5. They say that…

a) British tourists try lots of new dishes when they are abroad.

b) nowadays it is very unusual for British people to cook British food.

c) literature and language are more culturally important than food.

6. The writers’ final conclusion about British cooking is that…

a) there is no hope.

b) you will only be able to get British food in expensive restaurants.

c) you will be able to get more good traditional British dishes, especially in pubs.

IV. In pairs, spend 10 minutes preparing a set of questions, about the article, to ask other pairs. Use the ‘question starters’ below:

1. What would be result of…?

2. What exactly…?

3. In what way…?

4. What’s the main reason why…?

5. According to the text…?

6. What practical measures could be taken to…?

7. How might…?

8. What is it that…?

9. Why can’t…?

10. What do you think is meant by…?

It is interesting to know.…

· British eating habits are very different now from thirty years ago. People travel more and are learning to enjoy food from many different countries. In most towns, there are Chinese and Indian restaurants but in big cities you can also eat Japanese, Thai, Korean and Malaysian food. These restaurants are often cheaper than European restaurants and many people think that the food is more interesting.

· Take-away food is also very popular in Britain. Many people think that the idea of take-away meals comes from the USA, but in fact it comes from Britain. The original British take-away meal was fish and chip chops everywhere, as well as restaurants selling fast food like pizzas and hamburgers.

Lexical exercises

Active vocabulary

I. Choose the right word

fast food cookbook recipe dish menu take-away bill ingredients service wait person tip dessert bar lounge restaurant order

I really hate … I prefer to go to a good …that serves everything, including the…, using the best …Sometimes, I like to …something that I have tried at home. First, I look up the …in the …and then I cook the... Next, I go to the restaurant, and when the …comes to my table I ask for the …and order what I have already cooked at home! Sometimes, I like to go out for a…. You can have a drink in either a …or a…, which are usually nicer. At the end of the evening, it's time to ask for the …and, usually, if the …has been good, it's a good idea to leave a 15%-20% ….



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