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Free English Lesson! 5 Common ‘Food’ Idioms You Simply Need to Know:

Image representing students talking about the use of abbreviations

We’ve decided to give you some free little taster English lessons, because we’re just so darn generous! And one of the most difficult things about learning English is understanding the crazy idiomatic phrases we all use. If you don’t know them, it can be almost impossible to work out what the hell someone is talking about!
So here’s a few common idioms we like to use, connected to food and drink.

1. To put all your eggs in one basket

This means to rely on only one thing, and is often used as advice, starting with the word ‘Don’t’. Because if you only rely on one thing, and it fails, you will have nothing.

E.g, Even though I’m a talented artist, I also have a part-time teaching job. Because my dad always warned me not to put all my eggs in one basket.

2. To spice things up

This means to make something more exciting.

E.g, Since getting my new job, our relationship has been very boring. So I’ve decided to spice things up by booking some romantic trips abroad for my wife and I.

3. (Not my) cup of tea

This is usually used in the negative to talk about something you don’t particularly enjoy. It is not used when you hate this thing, just when it is not really enjoyable to you.

E.g, Do you want to go to the opera on Friday dear?
No thanks, it’s not really my cup of tea. You should go with Sarah instead.

4. Cheesy

This is used as an adjective to describe someone or something that tries too hard, is unsubtle, inauthentic, fake and low quality. It is usually used to describe movies, books, songs, people or spoken lines in which the one responsible for doing it probably wanted it to be sincere, authentic and high-quality! Cliché’s and chat-up lines are often thought to be cheesy. And romantic-comedy movies made in Hollywood are also often cheesy.

E.g, This cheesy guy came up to me in the club and said ‘did it hurt when you fell out of heaven, my angel?’ What a cheesy line!

5. To butter someone up

This is when you are extra nice to someone (especially for selfish reasons).

E.g. We need to butter Dad up before asking him for money.


Quick Practice:

So, which idioms would you use in these situations.
1. Someone invites you to a hockey match but you don’t really like hockey.
2. Your brother is planning to invest all his money in one risky project.
3. You need to tell your mum that you’ve broken her phone, so you want her to be in a good mood first.
4. Your friend decides to tell a girl how much he loves her by playing a song on his guitar in public, with a rose in his mouth.
5. Your office is plain white and pretty boring, so you decide to decorate it with fun colours.

Your Turn!

Now write a conversation between a brother and a sister and try to use all 5 idioms in the same dialogue!
Using new words and phrases in context is one of the best ways to make sure you understand them and remember them.
Good luck!