This is bound to come in handy during a pilgrimage to Rome.
MIT’s Experimental Study Group (ESG) is a learning community which offers basic level college courses in environments other than the classroom. The theory being that the immediate application of learned matterials, in a practical setting, can increase retention of information far greater than simply sitting through a lecture.
With this in mind Dr. Paola Rebusco put together a course which teaches conversational Italian, while simultaneously teaching the art of Italian cooking. The course, Speak Italian With Your Mouth Full, was made available by MIT in a playlist on youtube. The course summary states:
The participants in this seminar will dive into learning basic conversational Italian, Italian culture, and the Mediterranean diet. Each class is based on the preparation of a delicious dish and on the bite-sized acquisition of parts of the Italian language and culture. A good diet is not based on recipes only, it is also rooted in healthy habits and in culture. At the end of the seminar the participants will be able to cook some healthy and tasty recipes and to understand and speak basic Italian.
Students are given the names of the ingredients they use as they handle them and are introduced to Italian phrases, all while learning to create various Italian dishes from scratch. Some of the signature Italian foods they learn to prepare include: espresso, risotto, homemade pizza, bruschetta, and biscotti.
It’s a novel idea to combine lessons for language and cooking, since nearly every culture in the world has unique versions of each. Anyone who is interested in learning from this video series is advised to bring an appetite.