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- Online English Lesson Plans, Lesson Material and Ideas for "Culture of
English Speaking Countries Lessons" for Xiangtan Normal University...
WESTERN CULTURE AND SOCIETY: THE UNITED STATES OF
AMERICA (USA) -
American Food and Drink
meals in America are arranged around popular television shows, people like
to eat in front of the TV, not always sitting at a table, they sit in a
chair or on a sofa. Cooking in the USA is not just hamburgers, pizza and
fast food. However the American fast food restaurant chains have been very
successful at introducing American style fast food around the world, now
people from many lands believe it is what we everyone eats all of the time
in the USA.
traditional American foods were introduced by the early European immigrants
but modified to take advantage of the locally available ingredients. Fried
chicken, meatloaf, baked potato, corn, baked beans and apple pie would be
considered traditional American dishes.
Regional Cooking varies
from state to state and is highly influenced by the types of ingredients
locally available, as well as the cultural background of the people that
settled in the area. New England cooking, native to the northeastern states;
was heavily influenced by the cuisine of the original English settlers.
Southern cooking has definite African influences. Cajun cooking, from the
New Orleans area, is a spicy mixture of Spanish, French and African styles.
California cooking is known for the use of fresh fruits and vegetables in
interesting combinations with Asian, Mexican and Spanish flavorings.
A typical American breakfast menu includes scrambled or fried eggs or an egg
omelet, juice, bacon or sausage, toast, biscuits, or bagels. An alternative
American breakfast could be cereal with milk, juice, and toast or pancakes
or waffles with syrup and butter, juice, and white milk. Drinks include
orange juice, milk, tea or coffee. There are different types of breakfast as
Breakfast - Choice of orange, grapefruit, and cranberry juices, sliced
fruits and seasonal berries. An assortment of bakery items such as
Croissants, bagels, muffins, and assorted Danishes. Served with jam, cream
cheese and butter. Freshly brewed coffee, decaffeinated coffee and, iced
& herbal teas
Buffet - Choice of orange, grapefruit, and cranberry juices, sliced fruits
and seasonal berries. An assortment of bakery items such as
Croissants, bagels, muffins, and assorted Danishes. Served with jam, cream
cheese and butter. Assorted bowls of cereals, granola, and raisins.
Individual flavored yogurts. Farm fresh scrambled eggs. Country sausage.
Three pepper bacon. Breakfast potatoes. Freshly brewed coffee, decaffeinated
coffee and, iced & herbal teas. Thick sliced French toast with warm
The lunch menu normally involves sandwiches (peanut butter and/or jelly,
cheese, bologna, turkey, ham), rolls, hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, tacos,
chicken, salad, fruit (orange, banana, apple, tangerine), milk, soft drink,
tea or coffee.
The normal practice in
America is to eat the salad before the main course. A wonderful American
invention is the salad bar. In restaurants that have these salad bars the
waiter does not bring your salad. You go to the salad bar and help yourself,
usually to as much as you want. This is normally done after you have ordered
your meal; you eat the salad while the main course is being cooked.
There are many different
salads, such as: "Grilled Chicken Salad" - Mixed Greens tossed
with warm grilled Chicken Breast, Carrots and Tortilla Strips in our Cider
Vinaigrette. Topped with roasted Walnut Sauce. "Chicken Tender
Salad" - Chicken Tenders atop mixed Greens, Avocado, Scallions, Tomato
and shredded Cheddar, tossed in Peppercorn Ranch Dressing. Drizzled with
Barbecue Sauce. "Steak Salad" - Grilled seasoned Beef on mixed
young Greens with Avocado, Tomato and fresh Mozzarella tossed in Italian
Sandwiches are also
served in many different ways, if you eat out sandwiches may be as follows:
Served with crispy seasoned French Fries or mixed young Greens or Baked
Potato. Cheeseburger - Grilled with your choice of Cheese on a toasted
Sesame Seed Bun. Cooked well done unless otherwise specified. Zone Burger -
Add seared Mushrooms, Red Peppers, and Onions to our Cheeseburger. Cooked
well done unless otherwise specified. Turkey Burger - Grilled all white Meat
Patty with your choice of Cheese on a toasted Sesame Seed Bun.
Dinner is normally the largest meal of the day. It normally involves food
such as pizza, meat (steak, chicken, fish, pork, turkey) with potatoes and a
vegetable (corn, green beans, beans, carrots, spinach, peas, greens,
asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli), spaghetti with either tomato or meat
sauce, lasagna, tacos, and dessert (cake, cookies, pies, ice cream, and
candy). Dessert is served after the main meal - Triple Chocolate Cake,
All-American Apple Pie, Rum Carrot Cake, Sudden Death Brownie, Chocolate
Chip Cookie Sundae, Berries and Sorbet. turkey (pictured) is a traditional
food for Thanksgiving meals.
"Brunch" is a meal taken sometime in the late morning or
mid-afternoon. Fast Food is readily available almost everywhere in the USA
and is very inexpensive. Sandwiches are the most common and they come in
many varieties such as: Hamburgers, roast beef and chicken. Pizza is sold
everywhere. In addition, there are fast food restaurants serving fried
chicken, Mexican Tacos, Greek Gyros, Chinese dishes, Japanese sushi, Bar-B-Que
and many regional specialties. Many fast food restaurants offer free refills
on all drinks, and some offer "Giant sized" portions for a small
additional charge. You can get a fast food breakfast for about $3 and lunch
for less than $5.
Convenience Stores are
open from early morning to late night, sometimes even open "24 hours a
day". They usually sell groceries, snacks, pastries, cold drinks,
coffee, hot dogs, and sandwiches made to your order. They are very
inexpensive. You can usually get a light breakfast or lunch for just a few
Supermarkets sell many
things besides groceries. They sell hot soups by the cup or the pint. Spoons
and napkins are free. Make your own salad from a choice of several dozen
items and pay by the weight when you check out at the cashier. You can find
some real bargain meals "ready to eat" in a large supermarket. In
many cities, supermarkets are open "24 hours a day".
Food Courts have become
very popular in most shopping malls. They offer a variety of fast food
restaurants clustered around a central seating area. You can find many kinds
of foods, beverages and desserts with a comfortable place to relax and eat.
Malls usually open about 10:00 am and close at 9:00 pm except on Sundays
when they close at 5:00 pm in most parts of the USA.
All you can Eat Buffets
and Salad Bars are great places to go when you are really hungry. For one
price, you can eat all you want from the buffet table. In some "all you
can eat" restaurants the buffet table is over 50 feet (15 meters) long
with all sorts of meats, fishes, salads, fruits, vegetables and desserts.
Most "all you can eat" buffet restaurants charge about $7 to $10
at lunchtime and $10 to $15 for dinner. Many steak houses and other
restaurants have "soup and salad" bars that include hot foods like
chicken wings or tacos and desserts. If you order any meal, the "all
you can eat" salad bar is included at no extra charge. For a real
bargain, just order the salad bar with a beverage. A salad bar usually costs
about $5 at lunch and about $8 at dinner.
Smoking is now banned in all elevators, public buildings, hospitals, busses,
trains and airplanes in the US. Restaurants have "smoking" and
"non-smoking" tables. Many families do not smoke and prefer that
guests do not smoke in their home. Before you light a cigarette, always ask
your host or companion if smoking would bother them.
The minimum drinking age
for alcohol is 21 in nearly every state. Laws prohibit anyone under 21 years
old from buying, owning or drinking any alcoholic beverage. Bars and
nightclubs will not permit anyone younger to enter even if parents accompany
them. Restaurants that serve alcohol will allow children to enter and eat
but will not serve them any alcoholic beverage.