It makes me argh when I’ve prepared a lovely meal and my guests pick up the salt and pepper and have a go before tasting it. I don’t often say anything but last week we had guests for dinner that I know really well and I let fly.
I placed the plate in front of Mick and before I could put my plate down, he had reached for the salt and pepper. I was irritated but I didn’t say anything.
The dinner was good, the company was fun and I was having a great time. John said, “Honey, that was really good, we should have that again.”
What did Mick say?
“I liked it too but it was a bit salty for me.”
I let him have it that how could he say it was too salty when he salted it before he tasted it. He swore he hadn’t and I asked why the salt and pepper were still right in front of him. His partner agreed that he’d salted it before he tasted it (again) and how much it irritated her that he did it to her too.
Poor Mick copped it from both of us. Anita and I laughed but underneath the laughter was the knowing that we cooked good meals, tasting as we went along and they were well seasoned. Yes, I know, some people like their food saltier than I do and I have no problem with someone tasting and adding more salt to enhance their pleasure.
Please taste first — it will please the cook and she or he won’t get crankypants when you pick up the salt.
And while I’m at it, don’t cut a whole steak like you would for a child. Etiquette demands one cut for each bite. Bread should be eaten by tearing one bit off and buttering that bit and eating it. Buttering the whole thing is considered loutish.