What she means is that previously we were told that "al" means in the. So by all logic "crema al cioccolato" would mean "cream in the chocolate". Which does indeed sound a little weird. Duolingo SHOULD have given us an example or told us somehow that when you put those words together it makes the word "chocolate cream", but it didn't so this is a little unfair.
Some people here are straight up wrong. "al" means "to the". When you describe what a dish is FLAVORED like or what it TASTES like you would say "la crema al cioccolato", which means "chocolate cream/custard". Do not mistake cream as the type you use for coffees, instead it refers to cream as custard. Also you may notice that the word order is switched around, in Italian you say the "Dish __ Ingredient", whereas in English it would be "Ingredient Dish". People need to understand that it does NOT translate word for word from Italian to English and that there are grammatical syntax's that vary between the languages. A point that further illustrates this is "mangio la crema al cioccolato.", if you were to directly translate it word for word it would be "I eat the cream to the chocolate", which would make no sense in English. Italian has different ways of structuring sentences and it's something you just have to adapt to and learn over time, PRACTICE and it becomes second nature!
I understand what you are saying but it could hardly be considered to be unfair. I think of Duolingo as a very useful tool, a free tool, that can be used in one's quest to learn other languages. It is not a total solution by any means. After you reach level 25 you are just beginning your journey.
The way Duolingo is made, you can learn multiple things in a section, even if what you are learning has its own section later on. By saying "la crema al cioccolato", Duolingo is teaching you a bit of how to use prepositions before you actually get to that lesson. If they didn't blend the lessons, you would learn all the parts of a language, but you would be unable to put them together. This is actually intended to help you.
Also, Duolingo is designed to help you LEARN. By getting it wrong, you know the proper translation for next time. You aren't supposed to always know the answer. Otherwise, what's the point of Duolingo? If you wanted, you also could have hovered over "al" for the translation.
Finally, "al" is a combination of "a" and "il", "il" meaning "the", and "a" meaning "to", "of", or "at" (for countries, states/regions, and big islands). "At" could be confused for "in", as "in" and "a" both mean "at", but "in" also quite literally means "in".
Actually, they have. Look at the explanation given below the 6 lessons of the FOOD section. Al implies that the dish TASTES LIKE the ingredient. So "Crema al cioccolato" is the Cream which tastes like chocolate. Similarly "Gelato al cioccolato" is the Ice cream which tastes like chocolate (OR the ice cream flavored with chocolate).
Have you ever had Boston creme pie? What we call "creme" there is closer to "custard". There are some foods that, for historical reasons, still use "cream/creme" to describe what today most people would call "custard".
The Italian "crema" refers to that "cream/custard". "Panna" is "cream" like what one pours in one's coffee.
Are you saying that there are places in the world where chocolate cream is eaten as a dessert? In america, cream, the heavy stuff skimmed from the top of fresh milk is primarily an ingredient, or it is whipped to make whipped cream which is used as a topping. My point is that the duo lingo translation into English is simply wrong. There is no such thing as 'chocolate cream' in English. There is mousse, custard, pudding, filling, icing, ice cream, but one cannot go to the store or a restaurant and find something called 'chocolate cream'.
I think your point is perfect but highlights the void between languages. Simply, the translations often exist literally because of cultural difference.
Coffee in Italy is a good example. Latte is simply milk - not milk coffee. Caffe is I think espresso and so on. There are no true translations for all things - only best description which may differ as you learn to translate things for yourself as time goes on.
because Italian is not translating from English! In Italian you say "crema al cioccolato". Furthermore, they interchange the word cioccolato with other words to describe other types of cream. Consequently, translation of these terms has to be done specifically and with thought about an equivalent.
Why in most cases is it strongly emphasised to pay attention to the articles in Italian sentences but the translation back to English is somewhat generalised?
For instance in this particular sentence "Io mangio la crema al cioccolato". You can understand from the sentence that there is a specific chocolate cream that we are talking about (because of the 'la'), or a selection of different tastes and I am declaring that "I eat the chocolate cream", but at the same time the correct answer from the answers selection is "I eat chocolate cream" which is just a general statement about my taste preferences. Should it not be "Io mangio crema al cioccolato", or it will not make any sense?
Italian adds the article in a lot of places where English doesn't, so "Io mangio crema al cioccolato" would be incorrect. However, "I eat chocolate cream" is awkward English (though correct), the best translation is "I eat the chocolate cream", for the reasons you said. Normally English people will say "I like chocolate cream", "I like eating chocolate cream", I am eating chocolate cream", "I often eat chocolate cream" depending on the situation, rather than the awkward phrasing Duolingo used.
There isn't really any "in" implied; sure, chocolate is usually an ingredient in a chocolate cream/custard, but it could be just cocoa as well. A+article+noun in Italian usually expresses "how" something is made, e.g. "essere alla moda" (to be fashionable), "pantaloni alla zuava" (Zouave-style pants, i.e. knickerbockers); when talking about food it usually refers to their flavor, e.g. "tè al limone" (lemon tea) or "gnocchi al pesto" (gnocchi with pesto sauce).
Well, I try to remember that this is a free app. They are giving us one wonderful language tool here for nothing. I don't think it would hurt us to look things up. There are resources galore all over the internet for us to clarify things we don't understand. Plus we have this comments section where we can help each other out.
When a food uses "con", it's simply a matter of "this with that", rather similar to "food with X" in English. It's simply an item that's included.
When a food uses "al", it means that's the flavor of it. We say "flavor food" like "chocolate cake" and they say "food to the flavor" like "torta al cioccolato". If it were a major ingredient, it would be "food of ingredient". We say "carrot cake" and they say "torta di carote".
Sort of. If it helps to use that as a mnemonic, go ahead.
In English (a Germanic language), we have the ability to put two nouns together to form a phrase where the first noun acts like an adjective: orange juice, for example, means "juice that is made from oranges". But in Romance (Latinate) languages like Italian and its sister language Spanish, you can't say things like "naranja jugo" but rather must say things like "jugo de naranja".
This is confusing--not because I don't understand the translation, but because they keep telling me it's wrong and changing the answer. The first time I answered "I eat chocolate ice cream", which it counted wrong and said that the correct answer was 'I eat chocolate custard'--the next time it came around I answered "I eat chocolate custard", which was counted wrong and corrected to "I eat chocolate gellato". The third time (you can see where this is going to go) I answer with the previous correction, which was then counted wrong and corrected to "I eat chocolate ice cream" -_- really. REALLY.
The sentence caught me off guard. The only thing i could think of that would be chocolate cream and not chocolate mouse or chocolate icing would be chocolate pastry cream.
Just as you could walk into a store and order a white or a Boston cream donut., some rare places you could order a chocolate cream donut.
Di means that the dish has only that one ingredient (Eg: Lemon juice) , whereas Al means that the dish TASTES like that one ingredient (Eg: chocolate ice cream). It may be confusing because if a dish has only one ingredient, it should taste like it, so there shouldn't be a difference!! But that's the way it is. And it is possible to use any one of the two, if there is no room for confusion anyway. It depends on the dish and the way it is made.
The "Al" means that the DISH TASTES LIKE THE INGREDIENT. So "crema al cioccolato" is the cream 'which tastes like' chocolate (If there IS a product like this....maybe it's in something designed like a Shaving Cream Can). The "al" TAKES A DIFFERENT MEANING when used for a dish, but usually it means "To the". It is explained below the 6 lessons in FOOD section.
"Panna" refers specifically to milk fat (the term is defined somewhat strictly by the Italian laws), while "crema" can refer to a number of things, not all of which called "cream" in English. "Whipped cream" is "panna montata", but "whiskey cream" is "crema di whiskey".
a + il. "il" is one of the singular masculine words for "the".
ai would be
a + i. "i" is another singular masculine word for "the".
la is the singular feminine word for "the".
Sad that I typed "cream chocolate" but got it wrong as chocolate cream. Was my translation truly wrong or was DuoLingo strict for the exact translation?
This is where you're learning it.
Different languages work differently, they don't just use different words. In English, we say "flavor food" but in Italian they say "food to/at the flavor". Be careful about the difference between "flavored as" and "made with" though. In Italian, "made with" uses "of (di)".
English: chocolate cream
Italian: crema al cioccolato
English: vanilla ice cream
Italian: gelato alla vaniglia
English: carrot cake
Italian: torta di carote
It took me a while but my advice is to try and not literally translate languages word for word. You probably do it already and don't realise. Take Buongiorno for example. This means Good day but you probably recognize this as hello without a 2nd thought. When things are different I just treat it as trying to learn different codes. Also there's no point saying why does Italian do it like that. Italian is an older language than English so why should they change their day to day language to suit ours
No. Grammatical gender (also called noun classes) is mostly arbitrary and mostly has nothing to do with physical sex.
The feminine article is used because, like all adjectives, it must agree with the noun it goes with. "Crema" is a feminine noun, therefore it takes feminine adjectives, articles, and possessives.
Both men and women say "La crema è la mia" to mean "the cream is mine" because it must all agree with the noun "crema" and not the speaker.
Both men and women say "il cioccolato è il mio" to mean "the chocolate is mine" because it must all agree with the noun "cioccolato" and not the speaker.
It literally means "to/at the".
But different languages have different ways of saying things. English says "flavor food" like "cherry ice cream" or "vanilla cake". Italian says "food to the flavor" like "crema al cioccolato".
Ice cream is "gelato".
Custard is more similar to pudding and holds its form at room temperature.
Ice cream is frozen and will melt if it gets warm.
Would anyone else agree that Duo's fixation with 'crema al cioccolato' is a bit disproportionate to its actual frequency/usefulness? I mean, how often do you really eat chocolate custard (or chocolate creme patisserie, whichever it actually is)? We are taught "cioccolato" in plenty of other contexts (e.g. biscuits, ice-cream); and "panna" is a much more common/useful word for cream anyway! Sorry for this rant, but it really does come up too often!!