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Old January 13 2013, 07:10 AM   #46
sojourner
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

From the States here. I use knife and fork at the same time. Which is in which hand actually depends on what I'm eating, funny enough, though mostly the knife is in my left hand.
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Old January 13 2013, 07:57 AM   #47
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Miss Chicken wrote: View Post
I have a knife in my right hand and the fork in my left hand, and I use them together to eat. Using your knife, putting your knife down, picking up you fork, taking a bite and then repeating seems to be a very inefficient way to eat IMO.
I do the same thing except my knife is in my left hand and my fork is in my right hand
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Old January 13 2013, 05:22 PM   #48
Spot's Meow
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

JoeZhang wrote: View Post
The opening post baffled me until I read some of the follow-up posts, I have no idea that Americans did not use their knifes and forks in the same way as Europeans - as someone else pointed out - here we'd maybe see that sort of style in a child or maybe someone who had a disability and couldn't use both hands at once.

So do Americans not do the 8 o'clock (fork), 4 o'clock (knife) placement to indicate that you are taking a rest and then 6 o'clock (both) or 4 o'clock (both) to indicate that you are finished?
The thing is, there just aren't these many rules in American dining. Maybe for super fancy rich people there are, but I can't remember ever being taught or anyone actually following any place setting or silverware rules. Just don't talk with your mouth full, that's about the only rule I've ever witnessed being enforced at a dinner table. Otherwise, you eat however is most comfortable to you. Also, at restaurants, waiters and waitresses are often more chatty, so there is no need to "signal" that you are done eating, they've likely come around enough to realize that you are talking and no longer eating.

Anyway, this is a strange discussion to me because, first off, I don't eat foods that require a knife all that often I suppose (maybe once a month), and second because if I do have something like a steak, I cut all of the pieces before I begin eating. I always cut and eat with my right hand, as I would just be too uncoordinated to do it with my left hand, and I would find it annoying to have to stop during the meal to finish cutting up the steak. Just get it all done with at the beginning and then enjoy the meal.
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Old January 13 2013, 08:24 PM   #49
Rhubarbodendron
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

the cut-it-all-up method has one distinct disadvantage, compared to the European method: a cut steak gets very quickly cold. If you cut off only one bite at a time, the rest stays hot and more enjoyable.
If you cut your steak into bits, you have the fork in the left hand and the knife in the tight one, just as we Europeans. The only difference is that we use the fork (with the left hand) to put the bit we just held and cut off to the mouth. If you give it a try, you'll see that it doesn't take all that much coordination.

As for the super fancy rich people sticking to the rules, I'd disagree with you there. In my experience these newly rich people have the most horrible manners as they lack the refined upbringing. Good manners are mostly found in the upper middle class, in old families of some standing and in impoverished noble families.
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Old January 13 2013, 10:05 PM   #50
CorporalClegg
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
Why not just blend it and serve it in a beaker with a straw?
Not sure if serious, but half my diet is smoothies and fresh juices, so you're about right.

The other half is soups, salads, sauteed vegetables mixed with beans with pasta, grains or on a tortilla. That sort of thing. Chopping the food during prep isn't a matter of time but one of practicality.

Then there is all the raw veggies and fruits that I just eat by hand.

Sometimes I make a sandwich.

As I said, I have little need for a knife.
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Old January 13 2013, 11:01 PM   #51
6079SmithW
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

I am the same. I'm right handed and will eat with the fork/spoon in my right hand if no cutting is required but if it is then I just eat with my left hand instead of transferring utensils.
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Old January 13 2013, 11:15 PM   #52
JarodRussell
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Grey wrote: View Post
Usually when people eat with forks and knives, they put their knife in their dominant hand, cut, set the knife down, pick up their fork with their dominant hand, and then eat.
That sounds incredibly complicated.
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Old January 13 2013, 11:27 PM   #53
Grey
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Rhubarbodendron wrote: View Post
Also, here in Europe, we use both hands. You are supposed to cut one piece and then eat it with the fork, without the knife leaving your hand. The American method is tolerated in small children and acceptable for old people. However, you are supposed to always keep both hands (to the wrist, no further) on the table.
Wow, yeah...I remember being taught to eat the one-handed way as a kid, and I see people do it around me as adults. So I wasn't sure if this was how we were supposed to do it and I just gave that up in favor of a method of eating that is entirely more efficient, or whether...people just couldn't manipulate both hands well enough to eat with them.

Thank you, Europe, for settling my mind on this matter!

I'd be very interested, though, in learning what caused the American method. Is it only spite (doing it as different as possible from the way it's done in the homecountry) or is there a practical reason (having a hand free to grab the revolver lying in your lap)?
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Old January 13 2013, 11:30 PM   #54
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Grey wrote: View Post
Usually when people eat with forks and knives, they put their knife in their dominant hand, cut, set the knife down, pick up their fork with their dominant hand, and then eat.
I don't know a single person who does that. It's knife in one hand, fork in the other.

EDIT: Just seen the above. Looks like it's a US vs Europe thing.
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Old January 13 2013, 11:37 PM   #55
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

According to Wikipedia the American version is the oldest method and originally Europeans ate that way.

Another source (can't remember which one at the moment) said that the American (zig-zag ) method was used to show off the fork when the fork was first introduced, and was rare and a status symbol. At the time America was first being settled the zig-zig method was still being used in Europe. Later, when Europeans adopted the faster method America failed to do so.

When Australia, New Zealand etc were first settled the European method was the firmly established method in Britain so the colonists used it from the start.
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Old January 13 2013, 11:39 PM   #56
Grey
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Spot's Meow wrote: View Post
JoeZhang wrote: View Post
The opening post baffled me until I read some of the follow-up posts, I have no idea that Americans did not use their knifes and forks in the same way as Europeans - as someone else pointed out - here we'd maybe see that sort of style in a child or maybe someone who had a disability and couldn't use both hands at once.

So do Americans not do the 8 o'clock (fork), 4 o'clock (knife) placement to indicate that you are taking a rest and then 6 o'clock (both) or 4 o'clock (both) to indicate that you are finished?
The thing is, there just aren't these many rules in American dining. Maybe for super fancy rich people there are, but I can't remember ever being taught or anyone actually following any place setting or silverware rules. Just don't talk with your mouth full, that's about the only rule I've ever witnessed being enforced at a dinner table. Otherwise, you eat however is most comfortable to you. Also, at restaurants, waiters and waitresses are often more chatty, so there is no need to "signal" that you are done eating, they've likely come around enough to realize that you are talking and no longer eating.
Yeah...I've never utilized utensil positions to show I was finished with something. I don't think we're really taught that at the level I needed to know (general table manners, not etiquette school). I'm done when I stop picking at food on the plate. When I'm not done, I hover over my plate somewhat defensively whenever someone walks by.

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Grey wrote: View Post
Usually when people eat with forks and knives, they put their knife in their dominant hand, cut, set the knife down, pick up their fork with their dominant hand, and then eat.
That sounds incredibly complicated.
Yes. Yes it does.
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Old January 14 2013, 02:11 AM   #57
RoJoHen
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Grey wrote: View Post

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Grey wrote: View Post
Usually when people eat with forks and knives, they put their knife in their dominant hand, cut, set the knife down, pick up their fork with their dominant hand, and then eat.
That sounds incredibly complicated.
Yes. Yes it does.
I think you're overestimating how much thought actually goes into it.
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Old January 14 2013, 02:11 AM   #58
thestrangequark
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Spot's Meow wrote: View Post
JoeZhang wrote: View Post
The opening post baffled me until I read some of the follow-up posts, I have no idea that Americans did not use their knifes and forks in the same way as Europeans - as someone else pointed out - here we'd maybe see that sort of style in a child or maybe someone who had a disability and couldn't use both hands at once.

So do Americans not do the 8 o'clock (fork), 4 o'clock (knife) placement to indicate that you are taking a rest and then 6 o'clock (both) or 4 o'clock (both) to indicate that you are finished?
The thing is, there just aren't these many rules in American dining. Maybe for super fancy rich people there are, but I can't remember ever being taught or anyone actually following any place setting or silverware rules. Just don't talk with your mouth full, that's about the only rule I've ever witnessed being enforced at a dinner table. Otherwise, you eat however is most comfortable to you. Also, at restaurants, waiters and waitresses are often more chatty, so there is no need to "signal" that you are done eating, they've likely come around enough to realize that you are talking and no longer eating.

Anyway, this is a strange discussion to me because, first off, I don't eat foods that require a knife all that often I suppose (maybe once a month), and second because if I do have something like a steak, I cut all of the pieces before I begin eating. I always cut and eat with my right hand, as I would just be too uncoordinated to do it with my left hand, and I would find it annoying to have to stop during the meal to finish cutting up the steak. Just get it all done with at the beginning and then enjoy the meal.
He's trolling, Spots.
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Old January 14 2013, 05:16 AM   #59
scotpens
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Miss Chicken wrote: View Post
According to Wikipedia the American version is the oldest method and originally Europeans ate that way.

Another source (can't remember which one at the moment) said that the American (zig-zag ) method was used to show off the fork when the fork was first introduced, and was rare and a status symbol.
So which method did Thomas Becket use when he introduced the fork to Henry II?
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Old January 14 2013, 09:36 AM   #60
Rhubarbodendron
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Re: Eating with your dominate hand

Wikipedia is not always a trustworthy source.
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