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Eat your heart out: EF International Language Campuses explore different food cultures

At EF Education First, we believe that the world is better when people try to understand one another. And what better way to have those moments than over food? No matter the country, no matter the language, exploring different food cultures brings us together as a community and allows us to discover the tasty side of tradition.

Step inside any of our EF International Language Campuses, and you’ll witness firsthand a melting pot of different cultures and nationalities. Students come from all corners of the world to each campus to study the local language, experience a new culture, and learn from each other. Frequently, food is what brings them together. Whether it’s trying the local fare, teaching others about a traditional dish, or learning how to cook another, food is central in sparking countless conversations and friendships.

Every EF campus hosts activities that feature both must-have local eats and international delights thanks to our diverse students and staff eager to share their food culture. Let’s take a look and see what some of our campuses have been doing — but be warned! Don’t read on an empty stomach.

EF Brisbane

EF Brisbane samples Aussie treats

Every week features Tasty Tuesday at EF Brisbane when students get to try Aussie treats that people Down Under typically enjoy. Fairy bread (white bread, butter, and sprinkles), Lamington fingers (small sponge cakes coated in chocolate and rolled in shredded coconut), and Chocolate Tim Tams (Australian brand of biscuits) are popular for those with a sweet tooth.

As for the famous Vegemite Australia is known for… let’s say it’s an acquired taste for some. And they sure do love it down in Brissy! Whatever your taste buds may crave, they’re always trying something new and tasty on this campus.


EF Seoul

EF Seoul makes gimbap

A staple in Korean lunchboxes and picnics, gimbap (Korean seaweed rice roll) is the perfect on-the-go snack or meal. Its filling can contain various ingredients and can be vegetarian or vegan, so it’s a must-try treat for all.

At EF Seoul, students play a Korean quiz game to earn gimbap ingredients and make them together in class. That’s one class you don’t want to miss!


EF Brighton

EF Brighton treats

“On your mark, get set, bake!” Taking the name from the popular television show, EF Brighton hosts its own Great British Bake Off with a twist. They turn the competition into a fundraiser for charity!

Students and staff compete in baking cakes, cookies, and pastries, and members of the school can then buy the baked goods with all proceeds going to charity. Students and staff get to vote on their favorite treats in three categories: taste, look, and creativity. The highest scoring baker is named the winner and chooses the charity to donate the money raised.


EF New York

EF New York learns about different food cultures

Ever wanted to share a home-cooked meal with your classmates? How about your entire school? At EF New York, they make it possible!

‘Recipes from home’ is a collaboration with the dining hall on campus in which students work with the school’s Executive Chef to include cultural dishes on the menu. All students can try the dishes and learn more about other countries’ cuisine and food culture.


EF Auckland

EF Auckland explores food from France

Guy Fieri once said, “Cooking is all about people. Food is maybe the only universal thing that really has the power to bring everyone together. No matter what culture, everywhere around the world, people eat together.”

EF Auckland hosts a mini-international food festival celebrating the different cultures that make their school so vibrant in the spirit of that quote. Students prepare a traditional dish from their home country for others to try. The entire school gets involved, including staff!


EF Sydney

Pavlova might sound Russian, but it is indeed an Australian (and New Zealand) dessert! Named after the Russian prima ballerina Anna Pavlova who toured Australia and New Zealand in the 1920s, the dessert inspired a chef after seeing Pavlova’s tutu.

Students at EF Sydney get a crash course in this mini-history lesson, and better yet, get to make mini-pavlovas themselves! This year, the school opted to take the cooking tutorial online and shared a TikTok how-to for making pavlova. Try it at home yourself!


EF Honolulu

EF Honolulu samples different food cultures

The most popular activity amongst students in EF Honolulu has to be the beach barbecue. With its authentic Hawaiian food and American barbecue staples, students experience a feast on a picturesque beach where they can relax on the sand or play beach volleyball in between bites.


EF Paris

EF Paris' student bakers

Each week, EF Paris organizes ‘atelier de cuisine’ (a cooking workshop) for their students. Students learn to navigate their way through a kitchen, in French, while testing their baking skills on sablés (French butter cookies) and other baked goods.

With the amount of baking they do, many graduate as master French bakers!


EF Perth

EF Perth hosts an international food festival with students and staff representing their home countries. The festival starts with each student and staff member introducing their food before everyone gives it a try.

In their most recent festival, the school community served everything from Tiramisu from Swiss Italian students, to Bubble Tea from Taiwan, and Nasi Goreng from Indonesia.


EF Toronto

For students needing to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival due to COVID-19, EF Toronto offered a fun and engaging cooking competition. The staff left a selection of ingredients in the student’s rooms, and then the student had to come up with a dish that looked amazing and send it to EF staff.

EF Toronto shared the photos on social media channels for followers to vote.

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