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Author Topic: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.  (Read 5683 times)

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EngineerChick

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2011, 01:23:23 PM »
CRUD MONKEYS! it took me a bit to get used to eating with DF's family.  They just reach over and spear food out of other people's plates, sticking their hand under whatever they've chosen to try, never missing a beat of conversation.  There is always hands and forks and chopsticks flying everywhere, and people are always talking a mile a minute.  Glasses are always being moved around or knocked over.  But, they are a big, loud, happy bunch - and that's the way they do things.

I loathe the clean up after meals - especially at holidays when there are 20+ people.  Everyone gets up and gets into the clean up.  And everyone is in each others way - and no one ever stops talking.  It's complete bedlam.

They don't even ask before putting their utensils (or fingers) onto someone else's plate?   :o  Even with family that does the sharing like you described, that is too far.  I would be having a cow every time that happened.  What do they do when someone has a cold?

With the celiac, you have even more of a reason to not want cross-contamination.  And "cleaning" the utensils by licking them off?  Ewww.  In my opinion, them using their fingers doesn't make it better.  Who knows where their fingers have been or when they last washed their hands? 

The bedlam during clean-up wouldn't bother me too much, because at least everyone is helping.  But then, with the chaos and mess you describe during eating, one would hope they would help clean their mess.
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Thipu1

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2011, 01:51:27 PM »
There are polite ways of doing this.  Mr. Thipu and I call it 'taxing'.  We do it between ourselves.  We also do it with close friends.

We're in a restaurant and order different entrees. 

"That blackened catfish looks wonderful.  May I tax it?"

The taxer hands over his or her bread plate.  The taxed cuts off a portion of the food requested and hands it back to the taxer on the bread plate. 

This usually works very well.  On cruise ships, when the ambiance at the table is right,  we ask for the desserts to be served 'family style'.  Each diner at the table receives a dessert plate.  All the desserts on the menu are placed in the center of the table and everyone takes a spoon or forkful of the offered goodies before digging in. 

However, what you describe is over the top and beyond the pale.  It's acceptable for a small child to 'graze' from Mommy's or Daddy's plates.  It is not so for adults to be spearing food from the plates of other adults.     

Grape

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2011, 02:06:55 PM »
Even if you are not grossed out by taking a bite directly off each other's plates, it can be really tricky if there are more than two of you tasting. The bread plate method has always worked really well for me and my family. :)

Bijou

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2011, 02:49:08 PM »
Only my DH and I eat in this family style.  I think it is asking too much for someone to want someone else's eating utensils  in their dish...creepy!  Anyway...

This sounds like an Asian meal. 
Maybe you would consider this idea.  My DH and I had a set of Chinese dishes...all plain white...a large bowl for soup, ladle, serving dishes and utensils, individual dining plates, soup dishes, those Chinese style soup spoons, condiment dishes, tea cups and a tea pot.  It really isn't that great an investment and with a tablecloth you could set a special table...  and keep those wandering chop sticks at bay!

For other type meals I would use the same things, but with forks, knives and spoons.

Otherwise, I would use just regular serving dishes and utensils and provide individual dining plates for each person.  They would be on the table or counter waiting, when the food arrived.   
« Last Edit: July 24, 2011, 02:57:09 PM by Bijou »
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immadz

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2011, 02:55:59 PM »
I can see that it would bother some people. However, this is pretty much how my sister and I do it.  I would just speak up and let them know it bothers you so they will be sure not to do it to your food.


wrenskibaby

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2011, 04:04:45 PM »
It's not only gross, but it's rude to get food off someone's plate.  Why do families with quirks like this think it's acceptable outside their own kitchens?  If someone asked me nicely if they could try a bite of something I had, I'd indicate a small bit and let them spear it with their fork, but I wouldn't really like it. 

Elphaba

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2011, 04:13:09 PM »
It's not only gross, but it's rude to get food off someones plate.  Why do families with quirks like this think it's acceptable outside their own kitchens?  If someone asked me nicely if they could try a bite of something I had, I'd indicate a small bit and let them spear it with their fork, but I wouldn't really like it.

Because to them it's not a "quirk"? To them, the "quirk" is someone who doesn't share and gets hung up on little things like germs which aren't a big deal.

I'm not saying one is right and one is wrong, they're just different ways of having a meal. Since we're talking about family (who are usually more comfortable and less formal with each other), I think often times things stray from what's strictly "proper" and "improper" into places of "this is normal for XYZ family but not for me, how to I work it out so I'm not rude but can be more comfortable?"

kudeebee

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #22 on: July 24, 2011, 04:45:16 PM »
Why not put a small portion of your meal on a separate plate and place it on the table while stating 'IL family, here is part of my meal if any of you want to try it.'  Then you get to eat your meal on your plate and they can have tastes of your meal from the sharing plate you have put on the table.

Zogs

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #23 on: July 24, 2011, 05:41:40 PM »
It's not only gross, but it's rude to get food off someones plate.  Why do families with quirks like this think it's acceptable outside their own kitchens?  If someone asked me nicely if they could try a bite of something I had, I'd indicate a small bit and let them spear it with their fork, but I wouldn't really like it.

Because to them it's not a "quirk"? To them, the "quirk" is someone who doesn't share and gets hung up on little things like germs which aren't a big deal.

I'm not saying one is right and one is wrong, they're just different ways of having a meal. Since we're talking about family (who are usually more comfortable and less formal with each other), I think often times things stray from what's strictly "proper" and "improper" into places of "this is normal for XYZ family but not for me, how to I work it out so I'm not rude but can be more comfortable?"

Germs aren't little things.  I think someone who has just had a stomach virus and is now sticking their fork in my plate, frankly, is disgusting and this happened a few Thanksgivings ago with DFs family.

I think it's just basic hygiene to not put something that's been in your mouth or your fingers onto someone's plate.

I have absolutely no problem sharing my food or my drink with anyone, but I prefer to do it in a manner that's not going to make anyone sick.

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Elphaba

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #24 on: July 24, 2011, 07:48:58 PM »
It's not only gross, but it's rude to get food off someones plate.  Why do families with quirks like this think it's acceptable outside their own kitchens?  If someone asked me nicely if they could try a bite of something I had, I'd indicate a small bit and let them spear it with their fork, but I wouldn't really like it.

Because to them it's not a "quirk"? To them, the "quirk" is someone who doesn't share and gets hung up on little things like germs which aren't a big deal.

I'm not saying one is right and one is wrong, they're just different ways of having a meal. Since we're talking about family (who are usually more comfortable and less formal with each other), I think often times things stray from what's strictly "proper" and "improper" into places of "this is normal for XYZ family but not for me, how to I work it out so I'm not rude but can be more comfortable?"

Germs aren't little things.  I think someone who has just had a stomach virus and is now sticking their fork in my plate, frankly, is disgusting and this happened a few Thanksgivings ago with DFs family.

I think it's just basic hygiene to not put something that's been in your mouth or your fingers onto someone's plate.

I have absolutely no problem sharing my food or my drink with anyone, but I prefer to do it in a manner that's not going to make anyone sick.


Perhaps I wasn't clear, but with the first line of my post, I was trying to explain how they might feel if the situation were somehow reversed or they were clued into how you see their eating habits. I should have said more clearly that to them germs are little things. My point wasn't that your feelings about germs aren't valid, I was simply saying that different people, especially around family, have different standards and comfort levels. The goal is to make everyone comfortable (though the bread plate thing I suggested earlier, perhaps) in these family dinner situations without anyone getting squicked out or being rude.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2011, 07:52:45 PM by Elphaba »

Bijou

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #25 on: July 24, 2011, 08:35:03 PM »
Some families probably think they have "the same germs" so it doesn't matter (  ??? )
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wonderfullyanonymous

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #26 on: July 25, 2011, 12:30:58 PM »
I'm pretty laid back about family style eating, but that just grosses me out. I don't think I could eat like that with a bunch of other people. I think I'd make a sandwich and call it good.

purplemuse

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #27 on: July 25, 2011, 12:42:56 PM »
It would drive me nuts. Not necessarily from the germs, but because I do not want people taking it upon themselves to remove food from my plate.

You (general) want to try some? Fine; I'll serve it to you; but you do not get to help yourself to my meal.

hobish

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #28 on: July 25, 2011, 12:57:44 PM »

Elphaba, i think you nailed it on why family doesn't think of this as rude.

I wouldn't like this, either. It doesn't gross me out at all, few things do; but i get sick A LOT. My immune system is really just not very good. That kind of food sharing would just about guarantee me to be ill soon. I like the bread plate idea a lot for regular situations.

In your own home, though, where you are hosting, bringing out seperate serving bowls/plates might not be a bad idea. Just because they always do it that way doesn't mean you have to do it that way in your own house forever and ever, right?

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Yarnie

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Re: Splitting up dishes for sharing, IL style.
« Reply #29 on: July 25, 2011, 01:09:47 PM »
We eat this way in our family.  I don't inflict it on non family members, but when my mom, gumbysqueak and I are together, we might as well have one big plate.  However, out of a middle serving dish, we of course use the utensil provided.