Posted in Listening Classes

Off Menu Podcast: Listening – Sindhu Vee

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Image credit: https://play.acast.com/s/offmenu/

This is a lesson plan for B2+ students based around a clip from the brilliant Off Menu Podcast presented by Ed Gamble and James Acaster. The idea is to use the listening exercise as a way to encourage students to listen to podcasts for pleasure outside class. Download the student handout and answer key below:

Off Menu Podcast

The Off Menu Podcast is hosted by comedians Ed Gamble and James Acaster. Every week a different guest comes onto the show and talks about their ultimate dream meal. The meal must include a starter, main course, side dish, dessert and drink. There are no limits to what each dish could be, some guests have chosen things as varied as McDonald’s fries and Pizza Hut pizza or their mum’s Christmas dinner or a traditional Indian curry.

This week’s guest is the Indian comedian Sindhu Vee. Sindhu was born in India and has also lived in the Philippines; she now lives in London with her Danish husband.

Predict with your partner: You’re going to listen to the part where Sindhu chooses her dream main course. What do you think she chooses?

Link to the episode. Timing: 29:49-32:50

Listen for Gist

First listen: What was the dish?

Listen for Detail

2nd listen:

  1. Where did she try the dish?
  2. Who made the dish?
  3. How did the different members of her family react to the chef’s driving?
  4. What surprised her about Sicilian food?
  5. What was her husband’s reaction to the dish?
  6. What really impressed her about the dish?

Language focus

Look at the expressions Sindhu uses, what do you think they mean?

“Maniacal driving”

“I had to keep face”

“Not cognisant of the world around him.”

“You have a fight and flight response.”

“You’re gonna fight through to the taste.”

Follow up

Listen to the rest of the episode for homework, what does Sindhu choose for the other parts of her dream menu?

Answer Key

Listen for Gist

First listen: What was the dish? Pasta arrabbiata with angel hair pasta

Listen for Detail

2nd listen:

  1. Where did she try the dish? Near Florence
  2. Who made the dish? Mr Mancini the boss of the hotel
  3. How did the different members of her family react to the chef’s driving? She was fine, her husband was scared, her kids loved it
  4. What surprised her about Sicilian food? How spicy it was
  5. What was her husband’s reaction to the dish? He went blind
  6. What really impressed her about the dish? How it maintained its flavour despite being so spicy

Language focus

Look at the expressions Sindhu uses, what do you think they mean?

“Maniacal driving” – driving like a crazy person

“I had to keep face” – to maintain one’s reputation

“Not cognisant of the world around him.” – Not aware/unconscious

“You have a fight and flight response.” – Instinctive reaction, stand and fight or run away

“You’re gonna fight through to the taste.” – Battle against the spiciness to the flavour

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