These days they are usually full of comics and epizodes of photo stories. Grammar is minimalized into a small box.  But what I really like on textbooks is the skill practice, especially listening and reading parts. Though some may have problems with understanding, the new information students (and I) can get from  them is worth the effort. Once I was teaching Food topic. And then it occured to me: Why shouldn´ t I try any of the recipes?

No no no! The truth is different. It was one of the first recipes from a textbook for young learners – I think six graders. And it was May, the school year was slowly rolling to its end and the pupils felt it in every cell of their body. Something had to be done to motivate them.  We had already studied countable and uncountable nouns, sorted words into correct columns according to their fruit-vegetables-diary products-meat division and  read the epizode about Sam´s potatoe cakes. We were told they were delicious. At that moment I decided to make the cakes to reward and motivate my students.

It was quite easy – even the pupils would have been able to prepare them. Here´s the recipe:

Take 400 grams of potatoes and peel them. Put them into a pot filled with cold water, add salt and boil them untill they are ready. Then pour the water away and mash the potatoes. Add 125 grams of flour and 40 grams of butter and mix together. Form the mixture into a cylindric shape, then make 1 centimetre wide slices . Fry the slices on both sides untill they are brown. Sprinkle the cakes with 40 grams of grated cheese and put into the oven for a few minutes.

Well, yes. They were delicious while hot. When I took them to the classsroom the second day they were…well, edible. But this didn´t discouraged me. The last exercise in this unit about food was listening. Have you ever heard of Apple crumble? Hmmm! Put butter, sugar and flour into a big bowl. You can add cinnamon as well. Make a mixture just like Czech „drobenka“. Grate an apple into another bottle or cut it into small pieces. Put half of the mixture into a baking bowl, add a layer of the apple and cover it with the rest of the mixture. Put into the oven for 30 minutes. Easy for children, isn´t it? The internet advices to pour the Apple cramble with vanilla pudding.

The last interesting recipe I came across were Chocolate brownies, an American speciality. Heat the oven to 190 degrees. In a pot melt 200 grams of butter, 200 grams of sugar and 150 grams of chocolate. Add 4 eggs, 400 grams of flour and 50 grams of chopped walnuts. I also added baking soda. Pour the mixture into a tray and bake for 30 minutes. Delicious.

But there are some recipes I am a bit scared to try. For example cheese sandwiches with strawberry jam.  And what about you? Have you ever tried food from your textbook?

Andrea Leskotová
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