Players represent cooks attempting to gather the necessary ingredients to cook a variety of meals. There are a variety of ethnic dishes represented (English, Chinese, Italian, French or Indian), a few of which are also vegetarian. Players get bonuses for specializing in a certain ethnic cuisine and must be mindful to prepare at least one
vegetarian dish lest they be penalized by the growing veggie-lover contingent.
A number of recipes are played face-up to the table (onto a well designed board), with each recipe listing the ingredients it requires.
Players begin the game with only one ingredient and must acquire new ingredients either through auction (the most common method) or random draw (costly and a crap-shoot). When a player acquires new ingredients, whether it is on his turn or not, he immediately has the opportunity to
prepare one of the dishes depicted on the face-up recipe cards. If he can supply all of the necessary ingredients, he takes the corresponding recipe card and acquires money (beans ... actual beans!) to increase his coffers. Players may also cook recipes which were previously cooked by other players, but they only receive a portion of the monetary amount the original cook received.