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International food letter for IELTS

The international food letter question

Your friend is an expert in international food and is going to publish a book soon. Write a letter to him describing a special dish from your country. In your letter you should

  • describe a special dish from your country
  • explain what season people prefer to eat it in
  • say why your friend should include this dish in his book
You should understand from this question that you need to write a more informal letter as you are writing to a friend.

The model  letter

Dear Joe

It seems like ages since I’ve heard from you. I understand from Bill that you’re writing a book on international cuisine.

Can I suggest you include a recipe for roast beef and Yorkshire pudding in the UK chapter? It really is the ultimate British dish as it’s not just the meal we traditionally have for Sunday lunch, but it’s what most people think of when they think of British cooking. While I suppose the beef is simple enough, the Yorkshire pudding is quite something and a real local delicacy and your book wouldn’t be complete without it. It’s so traditional we eat it all year round, although I suppose it’s really a winter meal to be eaten in front of a good log fire.

Anyway, I hope you don’t get too stressed by the book and that it gets published on time. When it does come out, I hope you’ll remember your old friend and send me a copy.

Hope to hear from you soon,

George

Practise writing the letter

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The vocabulary

This is potentially a nasty question if you’re a non-cooking male like me. However, what you need to remember is that you only need a few “cooking” words to write the letter – just enough to show that you can write/speak about food in abnormal way. There is no need to give a detailed recipe – IELTS isn’t like that. No technical language is required. Al you need is a selection of these basic cooking words with some food words: 6/7 topic words is plenty.

dish – meal – lunch- dinner-course-delicacy -cuisine-cooking

delicious-tasty-spicy-sour-sweet-savoury

recipe-ingredients

boil -fry-roast-grill

It would be a mistake to forget that you rare writing to a friend who is going to publish a book, so you also need to think about some “book” words such as:

book – publish – author – chapter/section

Being informal – top and tail your letter with news

If you’re  writing a more  informal letter to a friend, then it is normal to open and close your letter with something social. This does not need to relate 100% to the letter, you just need to show that you are writing to a friend. Examples of the type of phrases you can consider using are:

It was great to hear from you again. [opening]

I really look forward to meeting up with you soon and don’t forget to give my love to your family. [closing]

Food language

While I am no chef, you should see that I have used plenty of simple food vocab. This is precisely the right sort of language for a lette roy this sort – you really don’t need technical food words.

Dear Joe

It seems like ages since I’ve heard from you. I understand from Bill that you’re writing a book on international cuisine.

Can I suggest you include a recipe for roast beef and Yorkshire pudding in the UK chapter? It really is the ultimate British dish as it’s not just the meal we traditionally have for Sunday lunch, but it’s what most people think of when they think of British cooking. While I suppose the beef is simple enough, the Yorkshire pudding is quite something and a real local delicacy and your book wouldn’t be complete without it. It’s so traditional we eat it all year round, although I suppose it’s really a winter meal to be eaten in front of a good log fire.

Anyway, I hope you don’t get too stressed by the book and that it gets published on time. When it does come out, I hope you’ll remember your old friend and send me a copy.

Hope to hear from you soon,

George

General language

Dear Joe

It seems like ages since I’ve heard from you. I understand from Bill that you’re writing a book on international cuisine.

Can I suggest you include a recipe for roast beef and Yorkshire pudding in the UK chapter? It really is the ultimate British dish as it’s not just the meal we traditionally have for Sunday lunch, but it’s what most people think of when they think of British cooking. While I suppose the beef is simple enough, the Yorkshire pudding is quite something and a real local delicacy and your book wouldn’t be complete without it. It’s so traditional we eat it all year round, although I suppose it’s really a winter meal to be eaten in front of a good log fire.

Anyway, I hope you don’t get too stressed by the book and that it gets published on time. When it does come out, I hope you’ll remember your old friend and send me a copy.

Hope to hear from you soon,

George

Notes

It seems like ages since I’ve heard from you: this is a phrase you can repeat from letter to letter

Can I suggest you include: this is a semi-polite request that is perfect for a letter of this type

it’s not just: you should note I use short form “it’s” all the way throughout the letter

I suppose: in a more formal letter you would use something like “In my opinion”

is quite something: an excellent idiom that takes this letter up to Band 9 level. It means it is something “very special”

Anyway, I hope you don’t get too stressed by the book : more Band 9 language. This “Anyway” is excellent letter vocab and you use it just like this to finish off a point and change the subject. You should also note how I use the circumstances of the letter (the book) to make my final paragraph.

When it does come out: “come out” is a phrasal verb meaning “be published”. If you do know any phrasal verbs (verbs in 2 words) they are ideal for informal letters.

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3 Responses to International food letter for IELTS

  1. mks September 15, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

    Hi
    can you please answer me asap, is the letter is for only ielts general test or for academic test too? I see a lot of tutorial in your website on letter writing and i am giving general test.

  2. Jan November 28, 2013 at 12:02 pm #

    Yes, the letter is Writing Task 1 for General Training only.

  3. Pui July 12, 2016 at 7:14 pm #

    Excellent job! Thanks so much!

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