Food Friday: Finger Foods

Cherished readers, there never seems to be a shortage of questions about food etiquette and table manners. Today The Lady will review items that may properly be consumed as ‘finger foods’. Bon Appetit.

Pizza: Except at a very formal dinner where one would use knife and fork (The Lady can truthfully say that she has never been to a formal dinner where pizza was served) pizza is eaten in your fingers with the wedge sides held together so that the cheese and filling do not come out. Have a napkin handy, just in case.

French Fries: Plain, small french fries with no gravy or ketchup on them can be eaten using your fingers, unless they are extremely greasy. Large french fries, or those served with gravy or other sauce are best eaten using fork.

Artichokes: A finger food. See post about this interesting vegetable here

Bacon: Only very crisp bacon may be eaten using your fingers.

Fried chicken: Should be eaten as a finger food on informal occasions, but this seems to perhaps be a regional preference. The Lady has had her second home in the South for just about 5 years now. The first time she attempted to eat fried chicken with a knife and fork, she received many quizzical looks. The Lady cannot recall when she was served fried chicken at a formal dinner.

Corn On The Cob: Finger food. See post here

Sandwiches: Small sandwiches may be eaten from the fingers, but large, high stacked sandwiches would be better eaten with a knife and fork. Imagine how big your mouth would have to be opened if you tried to fit a triple-decker club sandwich into it and how you would feel if someone snapped a picture at that moment. (Gracious!)

Olives and celery: Finger foods. Just a gentle reminder not to stick the olives on the ends of your fingers and nibble on them thoughtfully. The Lady admits that she did this as a child (and with great glee) but once one reaches the age of ten or so, it is no longer appropriate (alas).

Best Food Wishes,

The Lady Hooper-Brackett

Food Friday: Okie Dokie Artichokie

Cherished readers, because my posts about Food and Table Manners seem to be the most popular, I have designated Fridays as Food Fridays. Today’s post deals with artichokes, because people seem confused about how to eat them and also because we Hooper-Bracketts like to eat them here at the estate.

The artichoke is a study in contrasting textures. You have the tender leaves,  the inedible fuzzy ‘choke’ and finally the soft heart. Did you know that the artichoke is in the thistle family? When we cook it and eat it, it is an immature thistle bud. Here is the artichoke in all of its blooming glory:

Artichike flower.jpg

But as we are not interested in growing it…let’s get back to consuming it.

When you are served an artichoke, you must remember that it is a finger food. You pull the leaves off (one at a time), dip the meaty base into the sauce that is served with the artichoke (usually a hollandaise or a lemon butter) and then pull the leaf through your teeth to scrape off the end dipped in sauce. You would then place the inedible part of the leaf on the side of your plate. (Be neat!) You will proceed with each leaf in this fashion until you reach the center where you will find the fuzzy ‘choke’. Remove this fuzzy layer with a spoon, but don’t scrape too deeply…you want to keep the best part intact: The heart. You may cut heart into small bits and dip in the sauce.

For those who need a visual, The Lady found this short video for your viewing pleasure.

Best Food Wishes,

The Lady Hooper-Brackett