Cue Card Sample

IELTS Cue Card Sample 30 - Describe someone you know who is a good cook

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe someone you know who is a good cook.

You should say:

  •  who this person is
  •  how you know him or her
  • what kinds of food he/she cooks

and explain why you think this person is good at cooking.

Follow-up Questions:

  • What are the prospects of building a career as a cook in your country? 
  • What special dishes do you want to taste? Why?
  • What traditional food you would like your foreigner friends to try?


Model Answer 1:
Unfortunately, I am a terrible cook, but I can always appreciate those who can! I’m going to tell you about a friend of mine who is a wonderful chef, how I know her, what she can cook and why I think she is so great at it.

This person is a friend of mine, I know her through a running club I belong to, and as I’ve got to know her better over the years we now socialise together, I also sometimes help her with her allotment and I’ve been lucky enough to eat at her house many times.  She runs her own business, making bespoke biscuits, carefully decorated with original designs, so it’s just as well she can cook. But she also runs a busy household and regularly cooks delicious wholesome meals for her family.

This friend can seemingly cook anything, anywhere! She makes her own bread and can conjure a meal at a moment’s notice using eggs from her hens and herbs from her garden. She cooks and prepares healthy food and, fortunately for me, seems to enjoy catering for unexpected guests too. She makes very fine chocolate and orange cake, and her biscuits are famous amongst her friends as well as her clients. However, for me, a favourite meal was one she made for me recently. We went up to work on her allotment – that’s an area of land you can rent for a small fee from the local council as long as you use it for growing fruit and vegetables. It was a lovely summer’s day, and we planned to work into the evening preparing the ground. She had planned ahead. She brought up a small gas burner, a saucepan and some chopped red peppers, onions and other vegetables which she cooked up for us with some delicious fried halloumi cheese. She had even thought to bring fresh salad leaves, a light dressing and a sort of wrap to hold it all together. After our hard work on the land, we enjoyed the late evening sun and ate with relish. Nothing tastes as good as "food eaten outside" after physical work.

Why is she so good at cooking? I think it’s partly because she enjoys it, she has had a lot of practice, and it is her passion as well as her profession. I think she is good because she uses fresh and quality ingredients, quite simple recipes often, but tasty nutritious and beautifully – though not over-fussily – presented. I also think a really great cook is calm, relaxed and enjoys the sharing of their labours, she is all these things too. I feel very lucky to know her, and feel a little guilty that I don’t ever cook in return! It seems it is my contribution to always be a particularly appreciative consumer… it is a hard job, but someone has to do it!

[ Written by - Lucy Marris |  Careers Adviser (UK), TEFL teacher (Vietnam) ]


Model Answer 2:
Not sure about the others, but I always try to take my time to learn about or talk to a cook after enjoying some great dishes, prepared by someone I know. Today, I would like to talk about a person who, I think, is one of the best cooks I have ever known.

His name is Pradeep Singh, and he works at one of the most popular and busiest restaurants in my hometown. I had visited his restaurant a number of times before, but I met him in person only about a few months ago when I was attending a formal dinner party at his restaurant in order to celebrate the birthday of one of my friends.

At that dinner party, I saw Mr Pradeep, a strong-built guy in his mid 40’s, approaching me with a smiling face with his “chef apron” on him.  He introduced himself to us by telling us that it was his customary “chef-style” to come to his customers if they were having any formal dinner party at his restaurant. I also thanked him for serving me some of the best mutton biriyani, butter chicken (prepared in buttery gravy style, mixed with a mildly spiced tomato sauce) and malai kofta (an Indian vegetarian dish made of potato and cheese balls, dunked in smooth, rich and creamy gravy) I had ever eaten. However, even though Pradeep is excellent at cooking traditional Indian foods, he is also equally able to cook many oriental dishes from China and Japan as well as European, Mexican and Italian dishes to perfection. In fact, I can say this because I have already tried some of these delicious dishes, prepared by Pradeep, in the past.

Anyway, I think that Pradeep is good at cooking because he is never afraid of experimenting with different combination by using different kinds of food ingredients. His approach of serving different kinds of food and menus on different days in order to surprise his customers certainly makes him a good cook. Finally, I think, he is a good cook also because he really loves his profession.


Sample Answer 3:
Thank you for this great topic. To answer it, I’m going to talk about my friend Jesmin who is the best cook I personally know. She has prepared many great meals for me and I can't remember a single occasion when I disliked her meal. I know that every time I go around to her place to eat that I’ll be given something wonderful and tasty!

Jesmin isn’t a professional chef or anything like that but I do think that she could easily make a living as a cook and could earn some reputation from it. In fact, she’s a teacher at an elementary school and has a full-time job that means she can only ever cook in her spare time.

I first got to know her when we were at the same school. We were both students in the same class and didn’t know anyone else and we became close because we lived in the same neighbourhood. Even back then she was a terrific cook and she would invite me over to her room on a regular basis.

During the college days, neither of us had much money but while I survived on a diet of marmite sandwiches, she would make soups and stews – the sort of really practical food that lasts for a while and can be re-heated and costs very little to make because the ingredients are so cheap.

What kind of food does she cook? Well, she’s got a little more adventurous since our student days and she now has a huge variety of dishes. She’s quite experimental and so you can never quite tell what kind of food will be served up when you go around her. It could be traditional French cuisine, a pizza, a mixed salad, Spanish paella or even a curry.

I think what makes her so good at cooking is that she loves food herself and she loves entertaining people. She makes food that she thinks people will enjoy. Her passion for cooking and love for a delicious meal makes her stand out from the crowd as an exceptional cook.


Model Answer 4:
I know some of my relatives who are very good at cooking and I have heard about some famous cooks, nationally and internationally, who have magical powers of making delicious cuisines. But I'd like to talk about my mother whom I think is the greatest cook in the world. I have never enjoyed any menu more than the foods made by my mother. She is a gifted cook and she has a good reputation for making delicious and tasty menus out of very ordinary ingredients.  

The way she arranges the kitchen and makes foods is lovely and in my childhood, I used to think that she had taken training on cooking. But she actually learned the cooking from her family and was in charge of cooking for a large joint family. She is a graduate and I heard that she has a passion for cooking as she took several subjects related to housekeeping and cooking.

My mother was raised in a suburban area and got married at her 20 years of old. She continued her education and then took charge of cooking in my father's family. I have heard the appreciation of her cooking from many of our relatives and neighbours and felt proud of her.

Finding her cooking gives me a feeling that it's not a hard task, rather it's an artistic performance that the performer enjoys a lot. Sometimes I have been amazed to find her making foods in no times for the guests.

She mostly makes foods for the family members and that includes cooking making bread, rice, meats, fishes, burgers, sweet-meats, curry etc. For the festivals, she makes cakes, rich foods, and snacks, local and foreign cuisines. I have found her cooking Chinese, Thai, Italian and Mexican foods as well and that was always a wonder how she has learned those menus as she has never travelled to those countries nor has taken any training on making those foods. It will always be a mystery to me. 


Tips for answering this Cue Card topic: 

You can talk about one of your family members who you know is good at cooking. Alternatively, you can talk about a famous cook from your city and country. This cue card asks you to talk about a person who is a good cook. So you can describe a famous cook who is not personally known to you but you have heard about him/her from the newspaper, the internet or TV. But specifically, mention that you have heard about his/her cooking skills and fame from a source and never met him/her personally.

You can also talk about your mother/ sisters or grandmother and describe her cooking ability. Talking about a family member/ friend or relative would help you describing them in details and you would be able to give more information about them than a famous cook who you know very little.

Interestingly, males are also good at cooking so you can pick your father, uncle or brother as well and describe their cooking skills. It would be alluring to talk about yourself if you are a good cook. But avoid that! Describing your cooking ability and skills as well as other qualities would be a bit tricky to talk about. 

Things you should mention about the person who you would like to describe as a good cook:

» Can cook several delicious dishes.
» Has a natural talent for cooking food.
» People always appreciate the dishes she/he cooks.
» She/he has learned cooking from his/her family and has no academic training in cooking.
» Or, She/he has taken a course on cooking and thus his/ her interests on cooking developed.
» She enjoys cooking and love to experiment with different dishes.

You should be able to answer the following cue cards as well if you prepare for this cue card topic:

1. Describe a person in your family who has a special skill.
2. Describe something you learned from your family members.
3. Describe a useful skill you have.
4. Describe a family member of your family.
5. Talk about one of your friends who has a skill you admire. 

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