Do you like baking? What do people usually bake in your country? Do you think you’ll be baking more in the future? What would you like to bake?
  • Syrniki (noun) — syrniki are traditional pancakes from Russia and usually served for breakfast with jam or sour cream.
  • To get a kick out of (phrase) — to get a sense of enjoyment, amusement, or excitement from someone or something.
  • Wee bit (adj.) — by a very small amount or to a very small degree.
  • Vague (adj.) — not clearly or explicitly stated or expressed.
  • Sponge cake (noun) — sponge cake is a light cake made with eggs, flour and sugar, sometimes leavened with baking powder.
  • Pastry (adj.) — a type of sweet cake made of special pastry and usually containing something such as fruit or nuts.
  • To perfect (verb) — to make something free from faults.
Questions and answers
Maria: Rory. do you bake?

Rory: Well, up until recently, I couldn’t bake at all. But I learned how to make syrniki, which is, like, this Russian cheese… Well, dessert, I suppose. It gives me a sense of achievement, actually, because I learned how to do it myself. And it reminds me of different times. Although I suppose other than that, I’m a bit useless in the kitchen, I’m afraid.

Maria: Do you like baking?

Rory: Well, like I said, yeah, I get a real kick out of it. It’s nice to be able to do something, especially if you can make food for other people. But I’m very aware of the fact that I’m not very good at it.

Maria: Do you know how to bake cakes?

Rory: Sort of… Like I said, I’m a wee bit useless, but I have a vague idea how to do it. And it would be a fun thing to do with friends. But it’s not something that I would put on a CV, for example.

Maria: Rory the baker! Rory, have you ever made any cakes?

Rory the baker: Like, a really long time ago in high school probably. To be honest, my home economics teacher didn’t think much of my skills then either.

Maria: Have you baked anything recently?

Rory the baker: I don’t know. I made syrniki about two months ago and then since then I’ve been at camp and on holiday, so I haven’t really had much time to bake. Does two months ago count as recent?

Maria: What do people usually bake in your country?

Rory the baker: I don’t think… Well, there are a few things that are specific to Scotland, but if we talk about what people usually make… I think first of all, people have fun trying out different things and making different desserts. Although, if I had to pick one thing that’s quite popular, I suppose it’s probably sponge cakes, maybe. Although, I’m not really crazy about baking, so I don’t know too much about what’s popular and what’s not in Scotland. Sorry.

Maria: What about other countries? What do people usually bake? Just in general? All over the world.

Rory the baker: I suppose if we talk about Russia, for example, cakes are quite popular. Although then cakes are popular everywhere in the world and there always seem to be some kind of sponge cake, I’m guessing. I think that’s what they are. But you have other things like different pastry dishes, for example. And I think people like to make muffins and cupcakes. I think that’s quite popular in America. I’m not so sure about in the UK. But it’s definitely something that comes up in a lot of American media. So that would be my guess.

Maria: Do you think you’ll be baking more in the future?

Rory the baker: I’d like to try to! I suppose it’s a good skill to have in general — to be able to cook something, or to be able to bake something. So I’d like to try it more. Definitely. If I’ll have enough time, on the other hand, is another matter entirely.

Maria: What would you like to bake?

Rory the baker: Well, I can make syrniki, but there are a little bit burnt all the time. So I should probably learn how to perfect that first and then, moving on from there, maybe I could get in to making cakes again. This is all very vague because it’s not something that is a priority for me right now. But those two things I think are good ideas.
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