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  • Writer's pictureТимофей Милорадович

FCE, Reading and Use of English, Part 5 / A memorable Experience

Updated: Oct 4, 2022

Sara Adelardi, 17, tells us about taking part in a TV cooking competition

Since I was a child who stood in my grandmother's kitchen sniffing the delicious smell of freshly baked bread and homemade soups, I've known there is only one thing I want to do in life: cook. So, when I spotted an advert on a website inviting young people to app|y for a TV-cooking competition, there was little doubt I'd be first in line to take part. I thought, 'This could be the beginning of my cooking career!'

The application process was far from straightforward, as l soon discovered. First, l had to fill in a lengthy form, detailing everything from how l became interested in cooking (that was the easy part), to things like what I hoped to get out of being part of the show (these were much trickier!). Once l'd got through that stage of the process, the next step was to cook a test dish for the show's judges: scary but exciting, too. If that was good enough, l'd be invited to take part in the four-week televised competition. One person, selected by the judges, would be voted out of the competition in each programme, until the winner was announced during the final.

Until I had to create a test dish, I'd been pretty positive about my cooking ability; I often cooked big meals for my family at the weekends, and my friends loved the little snacks I took into school for break times. But suddenly I found myself up against 11 other young people who'd been cooking for longer. Some of them - I'd known this might be the case - had even had part-time jobs as waiters, surrounded by top-class food prepared by professional chefs. Would I really be able to compete? As I stood at my counter in the test kitchen, ready to start cooking, I remembered my grandmother's advice: 'Stick to what you know best'.

The judges tasted each test dish, made a few notes, and sent us all home. Then the wait began. Had I made it to the televised competition? Eventually, the phone call came. I'd be in the first live programme of the series, the following week! Our first challenge would be to make a meal with a selection of ingredients chosen by the judges.

It was impossible to know what they'd pick in advance, and I knew I'd just have

to use my creativity on the day, but I was still desperate to do some preparation, and rushed straight to my parents' kitchen, pulling everything from the

cupboards in a panic. All day I experimented with new flavour combinations, testing them out on my parents and sister. Most things they liked, some they didn't. What if the judges weren't keen on my dishes?

The day of the first programme dawned, and suddenly there I was with the other competitors, waiting to be given our instructions. The lights were hot in the TV studio, but although I'd expected to be nervous about being filmed for a TV show, my excitement soon took over. I recognized all the ingredients spread out

on the table in front of me, and I was eager to get to work. I knew exactly what I was going to cook! My grandmother's words rang in my ears again. 'Keep it

simple,' I thought, as I started chopping.

I didn't make it any further in the competition. The judges liked my dish and said I showed promise as a cook, but the other competitors were better on the day. I'd learnt a lot from seeing how they worked, and how imaginative their dishes were compared to mine, so I wasn't too disappointed. It had been a memorable experience, and (line 70) confirmed in my mind that cooking was the career for me. Years of learning still lie ahead of me, but one day I'd love to own my own restaurant - and help other young people fulfil their dreams too!


31 What is the writer's purpose in the first paragraph?

A) to highlight the writer's relationship with her grandmother

B) to describe the kinds of meals that the writer enjoyed cooking

C) to help readers identify with the writer's ambitious character

D) to explain why the competition appealed to the writer

32 What does the writer say about applying for the competition in the second paragraph?

A) It took much longer than she had hoped it would.

B) She found it challenging to answer some of the questions.

C) The process was as complicated as she had expected it to be.

D) She discovered details about the competition which she did not like.

33 How did the writer feel after she met the other competitors for the first time?

A) confident that she had the necessary skills to do so

B) determined to use the advice that she had been given

C) concerned that they would be better at cooking than she was

D) surprised by how much experience some of them had

З4 When it was confirmed that the writer would be taking part in the televised competition, she

A) decided to practise making some of her favourite recipes.

B) knew there was little point trying to guess what she'd have to do.

C) asked her family to make suggestions about what she should cook.

D) felt she ought to find out about ingredients she didn't ordinarily use.

35 on the first day of the competition, the writer says she felt

A) keen to get on with the task before her.

B) anxious about appearing on camera.

C) relieved to have ideas about what to cook.

D) grateful for the family support she had received.

36 What does lt refer to in line 70?

A) the judges' feedback

B) her time at the studio

C) other competitors' food

D) a feeling of disappointment

1 Comment

Unknown member
Jun 02, 2022


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