Skill 12: Secret Ingredient

Food is not just something we eat to stop us feeling hungry or provide us with nutrients and energy. Sure, this is important, but food is so much more than fuel!

Food defines culture, it brings people together, is central to celebrations, helps us create memories and is a way of showing appreciation. It makes our bodies and our minds feel good – and that’s really important if you want to live a happy and healthy life.

Learn to use these secret ingredients whenever you cook to complete your 12 before 12 journey.


The way we eat and what we eat is reflective of where we live, climate, culture and beliefs. Food is often the glue that brings people together, defines cultures and helps us tell stories. We all eat different foods, for different reasons. Tip: Use food to connect with others and learn about the way they cook, eat and live.

2. Love

It is important to respect food, the dining experience, and who you are eating with and cooking for. The best food is cooked with love for people important to you and for people who appreciate the meal and your effort. Tip: Always cook with passion, kind thoughts and generosity. Aim to warm someone’s stomach and their soul.

3. Appreciation

Always remember that someone has taken time from their day to prepare food for you, your friends and family. Do your best to ensure that the person who has made the effort feels respected and appreciated. This will create a happy and positive eating environment that everyone will appreciate. Tip: Try unfamiliar foods, give kind feedback and approach every meal time with a smile.