• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

Steak etiquette: Cut it all up at once, or one piece at a time?

Page 7 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

Jeff7

Lifer
Jan 4, 2001
41,604
17
81
Yes. Also, the knife is in the wrong hand.
Interesting. Have I also been holding forks backwards all my life?



(My god, in the past two days I've had so many flashbacks to when I watched My Fair Lady. Hey, it had Audrey Hepburn. I'd probably watch damn near anything if she's in it.:wub:)
 
Last edited:

CZroe

Lifer
Jun 24, 2001
23,750
672
126
Interesting. Have I also been holding forks backwards all my life?



(My god, in the past two days I've had so many flashbacks to when I watched My Fair Lady. Hey, it had Audrey Hepburn. I'd probably watch damn near anything if she's in it.:wub:)

You turn the tines down while cutting so that the handle of the fork doesn't get in the way of the knife and the back of the fork guides the knife through the meat. You put it in you mouth that way because the meat should already be attached with no reason to keep it balanced on top and it keeps the handle pointed down. This keeps the food, utensils, and your arms closer to you. Switch hands, rotate up: no elbows in the air and no fork sticking away from your face toward the opposite end of the table.
 
Last edited:

Jeff7

Lifer
Jan 4, 2001
41,604
17
81
You turn the tines down so that the handle of the fork doesn't get in the way of the knife and the back of the fork guides the knife through the meat. You put it in you mouth that way because the meat should already be attached with no reason to keep it balanced on top. This keeps the food, utensils, and your arms closer to you. Switch hands, rotate up: no elbows in the air and no fork sticking away from your face toward the opposite end of the table.
Trying it out now, I guess I just never really thought about it. It just gets rotated to whatever orientation works best.
 

leper84

Senior member
Dec 29, 2011
989
29
86
Throw it on fire for 4-6 min then shove it in face as desired. Pepper + salt only.

I'm actually feeling glad to be middle class after reading this thread.
 

CZroe

Lifer
Jun 24, 2001
23,750
672
126
Throw it on fire for 4-6 min then shove it in face as desired. Pepper + salt only.

I'm actually feeling glad to be middle class after reading this thread.
That's how most of us do it (I hope). Doesn't mean that's how I'd do it at a rare opportunity for a multi-course fine-dining meal.
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,728
332
126
My first thought upon seeing that diagram will be a sign for you:

Casual with two forks and two glasses? There were always two forks in the silverware drawer back home while growing up, but I always figured it was so there'd be small forks for the kids in the house and big ones for the adults. That's how the table was always set, anyway: One fork sized to the person using it. The silverware was generally in the area of the plate. We all had functioning arms and hands and could pick them up even if they weren't in the approved locations. :D


I guess I'll just ask, since I'm in deep already: Why are two of each necessary? What can one fork do that the other can't do? Seems like more things to have to clean afterward.
What are the two glasses typically for? Water and something else? I...honestly don't know. I've always known food and a drink, singular.



There's some tone implied in here that sees this as a problem.

Or maybe it's just society slowly shedding an unnecessarily complex ritualized behavior which is only remembered fondly by some because it's an established memory from their younger days of how things "should" be.
I would have been confused about the full dinner setting myself, but thankfully the military, of all organizations, helped set me straight with events like balls or dining outs. I had vaguely been informed of the proper approach growing up in school, but it was never something utilized in real life for us.

I mean, it was vaguely with some bigger family dinners, so I guess I had familiarity prior to ROTC, but I never gave it much thought.

I also still rarely ever have use for two forks and don't know which one is which. I'm not a leaf eater unless it's drowned with better flavors. :biggrin:

The traditional setting includes both a water and wine glass. The idea is that water is there as a secondary drink, I presume to help wash down anything and/or help clear the palate, whereas the wine is to complement the meal. Of course in modern settings, I'd say it's just as appropriate to replace that wine glass with a "fancy" beer glass that is appropriate to the specific style of beer. But, that is still likely frowned upon in favor of wine at a formal setting. Oh well. I will definitely pair a good Cabernet Sauvignon with steak and spaghetti (and my heavy-meat spaghetti gets a little bit added, and it's epic ;)).

Learning to exist in different social situations is the mark of an adult. Being willing to do so is the mark of a successful adult.

In the situation you describe, your discomfort was probably vividly evident to your dinner companion, anyway. You didn't need to hide it. In fact, just the opposite.

You could have straightforwardly confessed to him that there were some points of dining there you were unsure about. This would have marked you as a honest man, secure in who you are, who felt no shame in not knowing a few details. It would have shown him that you trusted him personally to guide you in whatever you didn't know.

Meeting such situations head on shrinks them down to the unimportant triviality that they are. And, in case you haven't noticed, people love to impart their knowledge to someone who asks in such situations. Don't you feel the same when someone comes to you and asks for your guidance about something you know and they don't?
Perknose, honestly, I think this is my favorite post of yours in recent memory. I don't always agree with either your actual point, or most often, your delivery, but you nailed it perfectly in a very mature fashion. :thumbsup:


A mark of a truly mature adult is the ability to admit they don't know what is expected of them in a situation, but to not let that serve as an excuse to shy away. I've had that enough in my own life, likely often where I had shied away growing up, but I am learning to tackle these things head on. I have a lot to learn, and no matter what, that will forever remain true. There will always be situations in which I find myself uncomfortable, but I am getting better at addressing the cause and seeking out the fastest resolution. Most often, simply finding someone to confide in and ask is all it takes.

I think I just reworded what you said, so I'm just going to stop here and reiterate that you hit the point perfectly in your post and I hope more people see it in my quote in the event they had missed it the first time. We all need a little humility, as we all need to acknowledge that there are abundant opportunities to learn and better ourselves. And better yet, the more we learn, the better we are able to help others who have yet to learn the same things, and having that opportunity to teach usually makes us all feel good. Win/win for all!
 

destrekor

Lifer
Nov 18, 2005
28,728
332
126
Quite the opposite actually. Americans are still doing the switch while the Europeans went back to cutting and eating with fork on the same hand. They thought it was too inefficient to keep laying down the knife and switch to the fork.
Ha, must have been some comical switching of the roles. That was definitely the way it was done in England during the era of the American revolution, unless I have bad sources. It was usually easy back then to spot an American by watching who switched utensils; Americans did not, Europe did.

When England and/or Europe switched to the easier American way, America must not have gotten the memo and, in a comical twist, decided that it is indeed more proper to do it the English way and went back to switching hands to eat.

Honestly, that's why I do it from time to time - it seemed proper. It was always the situation where the efficient (or lazy) way was improper. When the hell did the English switch? Damn you, damn you all to hell!

Just wait, Americans will adopt the new English ways, and they'll just switch back and point and laugh yet again. They always wanted retribution, those bastards!

I wonder if we can get them to finally adopt American English. Just when they finally get comfortable dropping all those unnecessary U's, we'll adopt British English just to spite them.

Who's on board? I want them to order Fish and Chips, and gleefully watch as they scream in horror at the sight of actual chips! :twisted:
 

MongGrel

Lifer
Dec 3, 2013
38,752
3,064
121
Ha, must have been some comical switching of the roles. That was definitely the way it was done in England during the era of the American revolution, unless I have bad sources. It was usually easy back then to spot an American by watching who switched utensils; Americans did not, Europe did.

When England and/or Europe switched to the easier American way, America must not have gotten the memo and, in a comical twist, decided that it is indeed more proper to do it the English way and went back to switching hands to eat.

Honestly, that's why I do it from time to time - it seemed proper. It was always the situation where the efficient (or lazy) way was improper. When the hell did the English switch? Damn you, damn you all to hell!

Just wait, Americans will adopt the new English ways, and they'll just switch back and point and laugh yet again. They always wanted retribution, those bastards!

I wonder if we can get them to finally adopt American English. Just when they finally get comfortable dropping all those unnecessary U's, we'll adopt British English just to spite them.

Who's on board? I want them to order Fish and Chips, and gleefully watch as they scream in horror at the sight of actual chips! :twisted:
You could always go old school and whip out a tomahawk :)

Guaranteed to impress anyone in the near vicinity.
 

Bjorn He

Junior Member
Aug 4, 2020
5
0
6
I have heard there is a reason that a diner is supposed to cut and eat one piece at a time, when eating a steak: The reason is that if one cuts the whole of the steak into pieces, it gets colder faster.

However, I don't think this reason means one is absolutely forced, or either forced at all, to cut one piece at a time. I didn't think about that the food gets colder when I cut my food into pieces and ate it with only the fork, and I did not either dislike the food just because it got colder. Just because it gets colder, it needn't get worse taste.
If its taste isn't worsening, there is no difference between eating it when it's kept warm and when it gets colder, what does it matter if it's warmer or colder?
 

Bjorn He

Junior Member
Aug 4, 2020
5
0
6
I have heard there is a reason that a diner is supposed to cut and eat one piece at a time, when eating a steak: The reason is that if one cuts the whole of the steak into pieces, it gets colder faster.

However, I don't think this reason means one is absolutely forced, or either forced at all, to cut one piece at a time. I didn't think about that the food gets colder when I cut my food into pieces and ate it with only the fork, and I did not either dislike the food just because it got colder. Just because it gets colder, it needn't get worse taste.
If its taste isn't worsening, there is no difference between eating it when it's kept warm and when it gets colder, what does it matter if it's warmer or colder?
If others think it's improper to eat as I eat, it is others who have matter and not I.

I think it's improper to say it's not proper to cut the whole food into pieces and eat it with only the fork. It is not good behaviour, and that childish claim that "it's improper to eat so because it's kid's behaviour" is not either any relevant.

If the reason that one is supposed to cut one piece at a time is "because then it does not get colder so fast", it is not reasonable to claim it's improper to cut the whole food and and eat it with just the fork "because that's kid's behaviour", because that childish claim has no relevancy.
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
13,304
3,957
146
Is it national necro day in OT or something? :oops:

Bitcoin, bulk beef, steak. Hopefully the threads with $2k+ audio cables next.
 
  • Haha
Reactions: Zanovar

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
13,304
3,957
146
Feb 4, 2009
26,741
7,265
136
beginning of that thread reads so differently post cheez has moved to the woods thread.

Those monster cables are great. Watching my Roku as I type. They fit snug but not excessively tight, thick braided cable that has some flexibility but sort of stays bent when needed.
Can’t remember why I needed the cable so urgently, I must have been a noob and left the cable attached when I retuned my cable box. Zero regrets going streaming only.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
102,061
16,301
136
If others think it's improper to eat as I eat, it is others who have matter and not I.

I think it's improper to say it's not proper to cut the whole food into pieces and eat it with only the fork. It is not good behaviour, and that childish claim that "it's improper to eat so because it's kid's behaviour" is not either any relevant.

If the reason that one is supposed to cut one piece at a time is "because then it does not get colder so fast", it is not reasonable to claim it's improper to cut the whole food and and eat it with just the fork "because that's kid's behaviour", because that childish claim has no relevancy.
Google is freaking me out right now.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY