Author Topic: S/O when you only want the stretchers  (Read 2301 times)

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LadyR

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S/O when you only want the stretchers
« on: March 03, 2013, 04:13:32 PM »
As a spin-off on wanting food without stretchers (lobster rolls without celery, etc.), what if you don't wnat the main and it means stretching the other ingredients further?

In that thread someone gave an example of a bagel breakfast and wanting the veggies/toppings, but not the bagel. I made me think of something that happened recently (and my DH admits he ws at fault here).

We were going to BIL's for a games day and BIL provided food for dinner for us (DH and I and two of our friends). BIL had picked up the fixings for sandwiches: lots of bread and meat, limited amount of cheese, olives and pickles. One of our friends is a vegetarian, a relatively new one, and DH had forgotten to mention it to BIL. So he was now in a position of needing to load up on the cheese/pickles/olives, which created an imbalance. We made it work and DH had his sandwiches without fillers, but it stuck in my mind.

I don't always like deli meat, so I am sometimes in the same postion where I'd load up on the extras, but then feel awkward if it created an imbalance. Should one just hold back until everyone has me theirs in those ircumstances and load up from what's left or is it ok to take a share of what you need to feel full, even if it may create a shortage?


Zilla

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2013, 04:20:02 PM »
Regardless of what the items are (good stuff, fillers etc) I wouldn't create a shortage for others if you have access to all the items.  In your case, I too am not fond of deli meats and would probably just get a slice of cheese and olives.  And wait to see if there is anything left. 

Carotte

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2013, 07:01:02 PM »
I would try not to create shortage, but depending on the company (people I know well) I would probably say something like 'I'm not gonna take any of XXX so feel free to take my share' or 'Anyone want to trade my share of XX for some YY?'.

Hmmmmm

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2013, 08:43:53 PM »
Agree with PPs. I'd have made a sandwhich with a slice of cheese, a few pickles and olives, but not more than I would have used if I were adding meat to the sandwhich. Probably wouldn't have been the tastiest, but enough to get through a couple of hours.

Sharnita

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2013, 09:03:31 PM »
Agree with PPs. I'd have made a sandwhich with a slice of cheese, a few pickles and olives, but not more than I would have used if I were adding meat to the sandwhich. Probably wouldn't have been the tastiest, but enough to get through a couple of hours.

I might kinda hang back and see if anyone left off cheese or other extas on theis so I knew if I could balance out mine with "their" extras.

WillyNilly

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2013, 11:42:44 PM »
I think your example is an odd one since I don't actually consider cheese an "extra" - IME its equally common to have meat & cheese as it is to have just meat or just cheese.

But in general on the topic I think one should always A) speak up if there is an issue or B) take what is clearly a 'fair share' not more. Its especially obnoxious to pick through a mixed dish for the good bits, but even when its just a 'make it yourself' situation where the ingredients are set out and you take what you want, its not hard to do a quick scan of how much there is total, how many people there are total and go from there with a reasonable serving.  (Which means in the case of meat and cheese, if there are a total of 15 slices of meat and cheese and there are five people, each person reasonably starts with no more then 3 slices total, whether its 1 turkey & 1 roast beef & 1 cheese, or 3 cheese, or 2 turkey & 1 cheese, etc.)

LadyR

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2013, 02:05:23 AM »
I think your example is an odd one since I don't actually consider cheese an "extra" - IME its equally common to have meat & cheese as it is to have just meat or just cheese.

But in general on the topic I think one should always A) speak up if there is an issue or B) take what is clearly a 'fair share' not more. Its especially obnoxious to pick through a mixed dish for the good bits, but even when its just a 'make it yourself' situation where the ingredients are set out and you take what you want, its not hard to do a quick scan of how much there is total, how many people there are total and go from there with a reasonable serving.  (Which means in the case of meat and cheese, if there are a total of 15 slices of meat and cheese and there are five people, each person reasonably starts with no more then 3 slices total, whether its 1 turkey & 1 roast beef & 1 cheese, or 3 cheese, or 2 turkey & 1 cheese, etc.)

I used cheese as a example because in the original incident there was much less cheese than meat, the cheese was supposed to compliment the meat, not stand on its own. Tese weren't cheese slices either, it was cheese sliced from a brick. There was enough to have two of these small slices per sandwich but to have a decent meal our friend needed to put four or five on his sandwich, which created an imbalance.


Lynn2000

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2013, 02:23:14 PM »
I think if you're looking at the whole spread and start to get that sinking feeling that you can only eat a small number of the items, you should hang back and let everyone else go first, then try to make do with what's left. (This would be assuming you hadn't told the host about your situation beforehand.) If you get less than you really wanted or a less-than-ideal combination, well, honestly I think that's a risk one takes when allowing anyone else to provide the food, you know?

I don't have any restrictions but I'm not very adventurous, and I often just don't eat much when I'm at someone else's house. People put "weird" stuff in their tuna salad or make the chili too spicy for me or whatever. So if there's tons of cheese cubes and crackers out with the chili, I might add more to my smidge of chili than anyone else is adding, but not enough to really make a dent in the total. On the other hand I wouldn't take two rolls on the first pass if everyone else just took one along with their tuna salad--maybe I would go back for a second later if it looked like there was "plenty." And eat when I get home.
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Mikayla

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2013, 02:50:41 PM »
I think if you're looking at the whole spread and start to get that sinking feeling that you can only eat a small number of the items, you should hang back and let everyone else go first, then try to make do with what's left. (This would be assuming you hadn't told the host about your situation beforehand.)

I think this is probably the best "rule of thumb".   

Until I started eating meat recently, there were 2 of us veggies in my family.  I followed the above; the other one always makes sure to get near the front of the line and load up on what she can eat.  One time I made my signature sauteed mushrooms, and there's never a large quantity because of the way I make them. She easily took half and I almost bit my tongue off.  I'm still not convinced there wasn't an ehell approved way for me to say something.

amylouky

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2013, 02:54:12 PM »
Both of these threads are just odd to me, because I am completely paranoid about not having enough food when hosting, so I usually prepare about 25-50% more of everything than we end up needing. So, a person taking twice his share of the cheese wouldn't affect anything at all.

I realize that's not always possible due to finances, but I do think it's a little odd when hosting (especially buffet or make-your-own style) to provide exactly enough for everyone to have X meal, configured exactly as planned, without any room for deviation. I see all the time on here, people have said that they couldn't eat a main course so they filled up on salad and bread. If there was just enough for each person to have X amount, that would mean they'd be shorting the other diners of salad and bread.

If that is the case, then I think it is rude to take more than your X share of anything, whether it's meat, cheese, lettuce, mayo, ice..

kudeebee

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2013, 11:01:37 PM »
I think it is the same as the thread about asking for the main without stretchers.  You take what would be your share, no more.  If there is extras left after everyone has gone through, you can get more of what you can eat. So if there is enough for 6 people to have a sandwich, then you take 1/6th of the amount the first time.

Lynn2000

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2013, 10:30:01 AM »
Both of these threads are just odd to me, because I am completely paranoid about not having enough food when hosting, so I usually prepare about 25-50% more of everything than we end up needing. So, a person taking twice his share of the cheese wouldn't affect anything at all.

I realize that's not always possible due to finances, but I do think it's a little odd when hosting (especially buffet or make-your-own style) to provide exactly enough for everyone to have X meal, configured exactly as planned, without any room for deviation. I see all the time on here, people have said that they couldn't eat a main course so they filled up on salad and bread. If there was just enough for each person to have X amount, that would mean they'd be shorting the other diners of salad and bread.

If that is the case, then I think it is rude to take more than your X share of anything, whether it's meat, cheese, lettuce, mayo, ice..

I do think this is a good point. I don't have much experience hosting; but it seems to me like it would be difficult to properly estimate how much food one should have. I'm sure I would err on the side of massive overkill if I could, which would then result in other problems behind the scenes (money, storage, leftovers going bad before I could eat them, etc.).

I remember I started a thread a couple of years ago about how much pizza to get for my office--I had estimated two slices per person, because that's what *I* ate, and ended up short because people took more, and my boss added extra people at the last minute. The responses I got to the thread were really varied in how much pizza was "typically" eaten by someone. So the next time, I bought pizzas estimating three slices per person, and--due to various different circumstances from the first lunch--I had massive leftovers! Which I was afraid would look to my boss like I was being careless and wasteful, since she was paying.

So maybe it just takes some people a few tries to get the balance right, of how much food to provide. And, they're bringing their own expectations to it--oh, I don't really like olives, so I'll just get a tiny jar of them, it's not really a big part of the meal--and it turns out most of their guests love olives and consider them essential to their meal, so they run out. The guy in the sandwich party story, for example, obviously preferred meat way more than cheese and assumed his guests did, too (because no one had told him one person was a vegetarian).

And then on top of that, you occasionally have the super-greedy guest who takes substantially more than they should, or at least before they should--like my co-worker who flat-out announced she was going to be "a greedy piggy" and got a second large slice from a small cake, before everyone had even had their first slice.  ::)
~Lynn2000

WillyNilly

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2013, 11:52:41 AM »
I think your example is an odd one since I don't actually consider cheese an "extra" - IME its equally common to have meat & cheese as it is to have just meat or just cheese.

But in general on the topic I think one should always A) speak up if there is an issue or B) take what is clearly a 'fair share' not more. Its especially obnoxious to pick through a mixed dish for the good bits, but even when its just a 'make it yourself' situation where the ingredients are set out and you take what you want, its not hard to do a quick scan of how much there is total, how many people there are total and go from there with a reasonable serving.  (Which means in the case of meat and cheese, if there are a total of 15 slices of meat and cheese and there are five people, each person reasonably starts with no more then 3 slices total, whether its 1 turkey & 1 roast beef & 1 cheese, or 3 cheese, or 2 turkey & 1 cheese, etc.)

I used cheese as a example because in the original incident there was much less cheese than meat, the cheese was supposed to compliment the meat, not stand on its own. Tese weren't cheese slices either, it was cheese sliced from a brick. There was enough to have two of these small slices per sandwich but to have a decent meal our friend needed to put four or five on his sandwich, which created an imbalance.

I think that's really just an example of poor planning and lack of consideration then, not a "stretchers" issue.  I am not a vegetarian, but would prefer a cheese sandwich to most deli meats. And since I hate olives, and pickles, while tasty have no real calories (therefore won't give a person any energy or truly satiate hunger) I too would be wanting mostly cheese (I also see both of those as a 'side" thing, not something that ever goes on a sandwich).  And I would be thinking, at the very least the person who bought it all, vastly preferred meat (since that what he bought the most of it) and wouldn't really consider he wanted meat and cheese, since, well like I said earlier, IME plenty of people don't mix meat and cheese, going for just meat or just cheese just as often; I would think he bought the cheese as a "oh! Maybe someone doesn't want meat, like I do, better get some cheese for those folks!" kinda thing.

Rohanna

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2013, 12:11:53 PM »
I would never serve a meal in which someone taking a reasonable portion of any one item would leave others without - so if I had sandwiches, there would be enough cheese AND enough meat for people to make a reasonable sandwich of either, with at least a little left over. Deli meat and cheese keeps well, so I would plan to use it up myself if I had leftovers. If I was serving something that didn't "keep" as well, I'd make sure there was enough "sides" to make up for a greedy person/someone who was pickier (ie at BBQs I have a couple cheap bags of chips and maybe a pack of hot dogs "in reserve" in the pantry in case it looks like lunch is running thin, or someone extra shows up). The only way I would have *exactly* what was needed is if I'd "taken orders" in advance for say, a picnic, and people knew exactly what they'd picked (like I was doing a subway run or something). To me it's down to being a reasonable host- I don't want someone to feel bad or go hungry because I failed to provide a reasonable amount and variety of food. If you are very picky, very hungry or have allergies/aversions/intolerances beyond the norm- you'll need to provide for yourself or talk to me, depending on the circumstances.



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LadyR

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Re: S/O when you only want the stretchers
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2013, 05:11:55 PM »
I think your example is an odd one since I don't actually consider cheese an "extra" - IME its equally common to have meat & cheese as it is to have just meat or just cheese.

But in general on the topic I think one should always A) speak up if there is an issue or B) take what is clearly a 'fair share' not more. Its especially obnoxious to pick through a mixed dish for the good bits, but even when its just a 'make it yourself' situation where the ingredients are set out and you take what you want, its not hard to do a quick scan of how much there is total, how many people there are total and go from there with a reasonable serving.  (Which means in the case of meat and cheese, if there are a total of 15 slices of meat and cheese and there are five people, each person reasonably starts with no more then 3 slices total, whether its 1 turkey & 1 roast beef & 1 cheese, or 3 cheese, or 2 turkey & 1 cheese, etc.)

I used cheese as a example because in the original incident there was much less cheese than meat, the cheese was supposed to compliment the meat, not stand on its own. Tese weren't cheese slices either, it was cheese sliced from a brick. There was enough to have two of these small slices per sandwich but to have a decent meal our friend needed to put four or five on his sandwich, which created an imbalance.

I think that's really just an example of poor planning and lack of consideration then, not a "stretchers" issue.  I am not a vegetarian, but would prefer a cheese sandwich to most deli meats. And since I hate olives, and pickles, while tasty have no real calories (therefore won't give a person any energy or truly satiate hunger) I too would be wanting mostly cheese (I also see both of those as a 'side" thing, not something that ever goes on a sandwich).  And I would be thinking, at the very least the person who bought it all, vastly preferred meat (since that what he bought the most of it) and wouldn't really consider he wanted meat and cheese, since, well like I said earlier, IME plenty of people don't mix meat and cheese, going for just meat or just cheese just as often; I would think he bought the cheese as a "oh! Maybe someone doesn't want meat, like I do, better get some cheese for those folks!" kinda thing.

My BIL has provided sandwiches for DH and I before, he has a good idea of what we like/how much we'll eat. Same with one of our two other friends. BIL made sure to get deli meat I'll eat. He just wasn't prepared for someone who wanted no meat and double cheese. To be fair, neither friend was expecting to be fed, they expected to grab their own/order something and it was nice of BIL to have food on hand for all of us and if vegetarian friend hadn't been there there would have been more than enough (though no left over pickles and olives with my son and nephew around).

To me the situation was different, as it wasn't a party, it was BIL's family and two close friends of his brother's in a very casual setting. Except for Friend2, BIL knew his audience very well (Friend1 had been a guest for board games before).
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 05:13:40 PM by LadyR »