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Spicing up English

Friday, 03 July 2015

Somosa

Well, here we are at the end of the journey of our much enjoyable cooking classes at the Maryam Centre in Tower Hamlets, ‘Spicing Up English’ with female learners from mostly the Bangladeshi community. It would be an understatement to say that the learners enjoyed eating the delicious food whilst preparing them. Attending English classes did not seem so boring after all!

The learners thought this would be like any other English class but little did they know that they would gain so much more from it including healthy living tips. Cooking was a mechanism to get them talking and share ideas, learn new words, measurements, portion sizes, calorie counting and what to look out for when shopping and cooking at home.

The learners experienced the concept of selling to the public at the bazaar at the Maryam Centre which generated positive responses from them. They felt their skills valued and some of the women were encouraged to pursue further training in food hygiene.

The women realised how the foods they eat greatly impact on their health and how to adopt more balanced meals to share with the family. It was an eye opener and it was pleasing to see them take interest in the health aspect of the project. They felt a part of the multicultural society they live in through their children and grandchildren who had different taste buds than them.

Although traditional foods will remain in existence for many more centuries to come, it is time to embrace integration and view other communities through the world of food.