Category Archives: Vocabulary Match Test

Book Review: “Words That Make A Difference”

Photo of book, "Words That Make A Difference" for blog on book review on www.SATgourmet.com, a blog by Charis Freiman-Mendel, author of "Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T."

Reading and studying "Words That Make A Difference" is a great way to learn more vocab!

On my hunt to find another creative vocabulary book, I came across Words That Make a Difference: and how to use them in a masterly way, written by Robert Greenman. Words That Make A Difference offers  yet another way to ATTAIN a great vocabulary through context. The book features hundreds of words that were used in passages from the RENOWNED newspaper, The New York Times. The book also includes a vocab list at the beginning and offers an easy tool at the end to clear up common linguistic mistakes, such as understanding the difference between “affect” and “effect.” There are about 400 pages of vocab words used in context, a sentence definition of that word and also how to sound it out. This book will keep you busy! Words That Make A Difference is a self-guide to learning words by reading passages that were written by vocabulary experts. It’s interesting and it makes learning fun.

Example:

SURREPTITIOUS   suh ruhp TI shus: acting in a secret, stealthy way

“‘The video pirates would take portable video cameras into movie theaters and surreptitiously tape the feature films being shown,’ Ms. Pirro said. She said they would then return to their base of operations and, using hundreds of conventional videocassette recorders, mass-produce copies of the movie.”

Words That Make A Difference was published in 2000, so it can be considered a “classic.” For words that make a difference today, Erin McKean writes a column for the New York Times NEMESIS called, Week In Words, a field guide to unusual words in this week’s Wall Street Journal. Erin highlights vocab that is not likely to appear on standardized tests but is fun NEVERTHELESS. 

Photo of mirliton or chayote squash for post by charis freiman-mendel, author of "cook your way Through The S.A.T.", on book review of "words that make a difference"
Mirliton (AKA chayote squash)

Erin wrote this in the February 11, 2012 column:

the mirliton squash (also known as a chayote) can be swapped for bitter melon varietals.

The word mirliton comes from a French word for a kazoo-type flute, although the squash itself is often called a “christophene” in France. It is also pronounced as “mella-ton.”

April 25th is National Zucchini Bread Day… consider baking a mirliton bread to celebrate! Scarlott Paolicchi recently featured my Zucchini Brownies recipe and fun fact vocabulary from Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T. on her blog, www.FamilyFocusBlog.com. Brownies aren’t exactly bread…but close enough?

Charis
  •  ATTAIN = achieve, acquire
  • RENOWNED = famous
  • SURREPTITIOUS = acting in a secret way
  • NEMESIS = rival
  • NEVERTHELESS = still

Hummus From Scratch

Photo of raw chickpeas for hummus from scratch recipe by charis freiman-mendel, author of cook your way through the s.a.t.

Raw organic chickpeas

Canned food may be contaminated by BPA, so I updated the hummus recipe in “Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T.” using raw chickpeas. It takes planning to make the hummus from scratch because the chickpeas have to soak for many hours.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried organic chickpeas (garbanzos)
  • ¼ cup organic tahini
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 4 tbsp EVOO + more for drizzling
  • 1 cup parsley, shredded + more for garnish
  • ½ tsp cumin + more for garnish
  • ½ tsp salt + more to taste
Photo of raw chickpeas submerged in a bowl of water for hummus from scratch recipe by charis freiman-mendel, author of cook your way through the s.a.t.

The chickpeas float until they absorb water, then become submerged

 Prep:

  • Soak the chickpeas overnight for 15 hours. Drain the water and soak them again, covered in fresh water, for 3 hours. Drain the chickpeas and rinse with fresh water.
  • Place the chickpeas in a large pot and cover with water. Bring the water to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until tender, about 1½ hours. Remove the foam and peels that form and float on the boiling water. Drain, saving 1 cup of the cooking water.
  • Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend into a thick paste. Add cooking water, 1 tbsp at a time, and pulse until the desired texture, smooth and creamy.
  • Add salt to taste.
  • Transfer the hummus to a bowl and chill. Dust with cumin, drizzle with EVOO, and garnish with parsley just before serving.
Photo of raw chickpeas cooking in pot for hummus from scratch recipe by charis freiman-mendel, author of cook your way through the s.a.t.

Skim the foam and peels from the pot as needed

Photo of all ingredients in a food processor for hummus from scratch recipe by charis freiman-mendel, author of cook your way through the s.a.t.

Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor

Photo of hummus finished product for hummus from scratch recipe by charis freiman-mendel, author of cook your way through the s.a.t.

Hummus from scratch, the finished product

Here’s the fun fact blurb for the “”Nancy’s Hummus With Pita Chips” recipe in Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T.:

Fun fact blurb for hummus recipe from Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T. by Charis Freiman-Mendel

Hummus recipe fun fact blurb

Try to figure out the vocab in context before you take the match test. The correct answers are listed alphabetically in the vocabulary word list on this website.

Vocabulary match test for hummus recipe fun fact blurb from Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T. by Charis Freiman-Mendel

The vocabulary match test for the hummus fun fact blurb

Hummus is high in protein so it’s a great dish for vegetarians. It’s delicious and the recipe can be varied to include your favorite herbs and spices.

Charis

ChicagoParent.com: Chicken And Dumpling Soup

Carrie Kaufman reviewed “Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T.” for ChicagoParent.com. She and her nine year old tested my recipe for “chicken and dumpling soup.” I was nine when I cooked my first serious meal, so maybe I can be an INSPIRATION. Here’s the recipe, which they cut in half for the test:

 photo of recipe for chicken and dumpling soup from "Cook your way through the S.a.T." for charis post on www.SATgourmet.com

This is the “fun fact blurb” that goes with the recipe. Try to figure out the definitions in context before you take the match test:

photo of "fun fact blurb" for chicken and dumpling soup from "Cook your way through the S.a.T." for charis post on www.SATgourmet.com

Here’s the match test (the answers are at the end of the book and on a list on the website):

photo of match test for chicken and dumpling soup from "Cook your way through the S.a.T." for charis post on www.SATgourmet.com

It’s been fun to see which recipe each reviewer chooses…they have all been different. Faith Durand of TheKitchn.com featured the “pesto pizza” and Cheramie Sonnier of the Baton Rouge Advocate chose my “meal in a pita pocket.”

Thanks to Carrie Kaufman for sharing my book.

INSPIRATION – (noun): germ, source, seed for later work

Charis

You can enjoy more recipes, stories and vocabulary by ordering “Cook Your Way Through The S.A.T.” (CYWTTSAT)