September 21, 2020

«The shyness of the Spaniards with the English disappears with a wine»

That imprecise and unspecified thing that we usually call life has pushed Julia Macaroni through different landscapes and nations. A pilgrimage, typical of people born under a wandering star, which has left a background of very enviable languages ​​and cultures. Today she is a polyglot able to function in Polish, German, English and Spanish. And, what is even more difficult, in the opinion of this reporter, which is handled with great skill and skill between the pots and pans (especially if it is pastry). A talent that must be added that is able to cook and put into practice recipes written in the language of Cervantes and Shakespeare. Julia, who is an English teacher, now publishes "Panda Kitchen Recipes", a volume in English and Spanish to start children in the kitchen but without any danger, as she herself hastens to clarify.

–What is the most difficult thing about writing a cookbook in Spanish and English?

–The utensils we use in the kitchen, because many of them are local. It is the most complicated. Even today there are still very difficult objects to define. I learned cooking in Poland and in Spain. Now it costs me less to name them in Spanish than in English. In Spanish I distinguish quite well what a sieve is, but in English it is more complex to find the most appropriate word.

– And the recipe that has cost more to translate?

– Well, he won't believe it, but it's pizza, which is very simple, because it has no mysteries. But to make the base you must make a volcano of flour and then there pour yeast and mix with enveloping movements. When you take it to English you doubt which term is the most appropriate: volcano? crater? I have opted for the most descriptive of them.

– What is one of the difficulties that Spaniards have to learn English?

– An important aspect is that you have to learn vocabulary. If you don't learn it, you don't use it. In this sense, English can be compared with cooking, because vocabulary is the ingredients, while grammar can be compared with recipes. The more vocabulary you assume, the more dishes you can do. The same happens with grammar. If you always work with flour, holes and butter, you will not make new dishes. If you only know four words, you will always talk about the same things. If you expand the vocabulary, you will have more conversations. Vocabulary is the ingredients of a language. It is what enriches your English.

–And why is it hard for us to let go with languages?

–It is a cultural issue. Nobody likes to admit openly that we don't know something. And communication in Spain is important. Here we talk in bars screaming and we all understand each other. But when you find yourself in a situation where communication is affected because they consider that they do not speak a language well, the Spaniards cut themselves and are ashamed. They do not launch because they believe they cannot defend themselves. But it is also true that when Spanish drinks a glass of wine, their shyness with English disappears. There is a phrase that I like to repeat: "Never laugh at a person who speaks one language badly because it means that he speaks another." No one can think of laughing at someone for speaking a language badly. On the contrary, it is very admirable.

–What is the Spanish recipe that hardest for foreigners to learn?

– (Laughs) It's going to sound like a topic, but it's true: the potato omelette and the paella. They are horrible. I still haven't managed to get the point to rice.

– With these recipes you will get the children to get in the kitchen with their parents.

–The kitchen is a very special place. It is where things happen at home parties. A site that unites. These recipes can take pressure off parents to be thinking about something to entertain their children. Here is a book with 15 recipes and can be made by children supervised by their father or mother. It is something they do together and then they can also enjoy together by eating it. A way to spend quality time together.

– And what is more difficult in English, a recipe or talk about politics?

– I think it is more difficult to talk about politics, because politics separates while the kitchen unites. Everything that separates is always more difficult. The kitchen, on the other hand, always brings people together around a table. It is one of the most important things that food has. Now, what it would be like to talk about politics while eating, that is already quite different.

. (tagsToTranslate) Gastronomy (t) Books

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