Baking A Cake-English Listening Comprehension Following Instructions Ep 483

A fruit crumble cake looking very tasty. It's a good idea to practice English listening comprehension of instructions. Understanding instructions is a skill you can use in a variety of situations.

📝 Author: Hilary

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💬 1906 words ▪️ ⏳ Reading Time 10 min

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This One Is A Real Treat: Free And Easy English Listening Practice

Do you like cake? Do you enjoy listening to directions? If answering "yes" to the first question and "sometimes" to the second, you are going to really enjoy this English listening lesson . Have a listen and improve your English comprehension skills. This is a fun lesson to listen to, but it’s also practical. Follow the instructions and you’ll end up with a yummy cake.

Can you understand English instructions? Being able to understand instructions in English is a key English comprehension skill. This English podcast lesson will help you improve your English listening comprehension skills and maybe get a nice slice of cake too!

Recently we did a podcast on following directions to find a location, using the type of language a native English speaker would use in the UK. Today we are sticking with the theme of practising listening to and comprehending instructions, but this time we are going to work with ingredients and measurements and the vocabulary you might encounter.

My policy on cake is pro having it and pro eating it.
⭐ Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minster

We have lots and lots of lessons in listening comprehension range from basic to advanced. No matter your level, you will enjoy English lessons at Adept English.

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Most common 2 word phrases:

A Recipe7
You Can4
A Dessert3
Instructions For2
Give You2
That Means2
Quite A2
Learn English2
You Cook2
You Put2
You Eat2
Some Cooking2

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Transcript: Baking a Cake-English Listening Comprehension Following Instructions

Hi and welcome to this podcast from Adept English. Today we’re going to do some cooking together – in English, of course. This is our podcast series for people who want to learn English and speak it fluently. We help you learn through listening. So today we’re going to do a recipe. Some cooking to help you learn English in the home. And if you cook this, I’m sure you’ll enjoy eating it too – and it will be good for using up your autumn fruit!

Recipes, Ingredients, Desserts – and Deserts!

We haven’t done a recipe in a while – that’s RECIPE – and ‘a recipe’ is a set of instructions for making a particular type of food, a dish. So ‘a recipe’ is directions for cooking. ‘A recipe’ will give you a list of ingredients, that’s INGREDIENTS – and that means the things you put into the dish and a recipe will also give you instructions for what to do, how to make it.

So this is a recipe that I’ve tried in the last week – and it’s a dessert or pudding. This means that it’s sweet and you eat it after your main course. Ice cream or fruit pie would be examples of ‘a dessert’ – and that’s spelt DESSERT. Don’t mix this word up with ‘desert’, DESERT. That means a place like the Sahara or the Mohave. It’s a hot dry region, full of sand. Whereas ‘a dessert’ is something you eat for your dinner with two Ss.


A strawberry ice-cream being held up against a lovely landscape. This lesson is about understanding instructions. English instructions are used in many situations.

©️ Adept English 2021

Recipe for ‘Rhubarb Crumble Cake’

So this recipe is for ‘Rhubarb Crumble Cake’ – and in case you don’t know it, ‘rhubarb’ is a fruit. That’s RHUBARB. Rhubarb is something that people in the UK grow quite a lot in their gardens. It’s a stalk, STALK that you can eat, so it’s rather like celery or asparagus – they’re stalks. But rhubarb is sweet.

You do have to put quite a bit of sugar with it though, to make it sweet. And this pudding, well you could also use apples or pears, plums or apricots. There are lots of different fruits which would work as well as rhubarb. Anything you can put in a pie, really.

So here goes with the recipe – see how much you can understand. I’ll do both imperial and metric measurements, so you can have some practice at that too.

The ingredients are:-

  • 1lb or 450g rhubarb or other fruit
  • tablespoon sugar

For the crumble topping

  • 2oz (55g) butter
  • 4oz (113g) flour
  • 1oz (28g) sugar

And for the base

  • 3oz (85g) butter
  • 3oz (85g) sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3oz (85g) self-raising flour
  • pinch of salt

Heat up your oven to 190C. The oven, OVEN is where you bake things. It’s like a ‘hot cupboard’ that you cook in. Grease a cake tin that’s 8 inches or 20cm in diameter. ‘To grease’, GREASE means you put a bit of fat or butter onto the tin, so that the cake doesn’t stick, so that the cake comes out easily when it’s cooked.

And ‘a cake tin’ is just a tin that you put cake mixture in to cook it – often they’re round with shallow sides. If you have a cake tin with a ‘loose bottom’ – so the bottom which slides up and down, that will make it easier to get the cake out at the end.


Reminder of the Seven Rules of Adept English Course

Before we go on with the recipe, just a reminder that if you’re new to our podcasts and you want to understand more about the Adept English ‘Listen & Learn’ way of learning English, then you can sign up for our free course. Just go to our website at and find our 'Seven Rules of Adept English Course’.

Boost Your Learning With Adept English

This course gives you a different approach to learning a language – and it makes lots of sense when you hear it. But it will also make sure that you’re using the Adept English learning material, the courses and the podcasts, in the best possible way!

Method for the Rhubarb Crumble Cake

OK – back to our Rhubarb Crumble Cake. So first of all, you make the crumble topping. So take the 2 oz butter and 4oz flour and rub them together – so that they look like ‘breadcrumbs’. Then you stir in the 1oz of sugar.

Peel the rhubarb and cut it into 1 inch pieces. Or if you’re using other fruit, peel it and chop it as necessary. And roll it in the tablespoonful of sugar. This is particularly important if you’re using rhubarb as it’s quite sour without sugar. You need about a pound or 450g of fruit, once it’s peeled and chopped.

Then make the cake mixture. So beat the butter and sugar together, until it’s smooth and light. Using an electric whisk, that’s WHISK – that will make it much quicker. It’s quite hard work, otherwise. Once the butter and the sugar are creamed together, gradually add the eggs and keep on whisking as you do this. Once all the egg is mixed in, stop using the whisk and gradually stir in the flour, bit by bit. This is a classic ‘white cake’ recipe, really.

Then you turn this mixture into a cake tin and smooth it level on the top. Then you put your raw fruit in – rhubarb or whatever you’re using – in a layer. And last of all, you sprinkle the crumble topping over the top of the cake. Bake your cake in the oven for about 45 minutes – until it’s nice and golden brown on the top. The cake mixture should rise underneath – giving the whole thing a domed appearance and the fruit should be nice and cooked.

When you take your crumble cake out of the oven, let it cool completely before you try and remove it from the cake tin.

It’s also best eaten fresh, when it’s still crunchy. And have it with vanilla ice cream or perhaps crème fraîche, if you like that. Or custard would be a nice option. I think this recipe is very good for using up your autumn fruit, especially if you’ve got apples left over.

Reminder of the cooking vocabulary used in this podcast

Just a reminder before we finish of the more specific vocabulary that I’ve used in this podcast. Recipe – so ‘a recipe’ is a set of instructions for cooking and ‘ingredients’ means the things that you put into the cooking, when you’re following the instructions in the recipe. Then we talked about ‘dessert’ as opposed to ‘desert’ – so the ‘dessert’ is the pudding and the ‘desert’ is like the Sahara.

Erm – ‘rhubarb’ is a fruit, commonly grown in the UK that’s like a stalk and ‘crumble topping’ you will come across in lots of puddings. The word for an ‘oven’, OVEN – where you bake things. And ‘to grease’ a tin, means to put fat on it. We also used the word ‘ounces’, where the abbreviation is OZ.

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So that’s an old, imperial measurement, but I’ve also given you the quantities in grammes as well. And we were cooking with butter, sugar, flour and eggs – so classic cake ingredients. And I also talked about ‘an electric whisk’, WHISK – so that’s the thing that goes round and round really quickly and mixes things up when you’re cooking. And the word ‘to bake’ – that means just to cook something in the oven.

Let us know if you make Rhubarb Crumble Cake!

OK, so let me know if you make this Rhubarb Crumble Cake – did it taste good? And did you do it with other fruit? I hope it worked out for you anyway!


Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.



The voice of Adeptenglish, loves English and wants to help people who want to speak English fluently.
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