July 9th, 1971

This week, for those wanting to learn a little more about gentlemanly behaviour in 2010, we’ve chosen the topic of Gastronomy and are taking a look at a couple of areas, of which little is known by most...

Tip of the week: Gastronomy

Soup Style
Push your soup spoon from the front of the bowl away from you to catch a mouthful. Bring this to your mouth and tip the soup in from the side of the spoon; don’t suck or slurp. Tilt the bowl away from you in order to get the last few spoonful’s. Bread may be dipped in the soup. Put your spoon down while you use your fingers to break off pieces of bread, dip and eat them. Leave your spoon in the bowl when you have finished.

Bread Role Rules
  • Bread rolls are eaten from the side plate, to the left of a place setting
  • You should break your roll into bite-sized pieces that are eaten individually
  • Break off a new piece for each mouthful, rather than dividing the roll into numerous chunks in advance
  • Butter, if desired, is taken from the butter dish and placed on the edge of your side plate
  • Each new piece, or mouthful, is then individually buttered

Get it Right: Steak
When it comes to steak, there’s a trade-off to be made between tenderness and taste. Fillet, the most expensive of cuts, is rightly revered for its melt-in-the-mouth texture rather than its flavour. Sirloin, rib eye and rump require an increasing amount of jaw work, but reward the tastebuds more in return for the extra effort.

Approximate Time for Pan Frying:
  • Blue: 1 minute per side
  • Rare: 1.5 minutes per side
  • Medium-rare: 2 minutes per side
  • Medium: 2.5 minutes per side
  • Medium – well: 3 minutes per side
  • Well-done: 3.5 minutes per side
Handy Tip: When cooking steak in a griddle pan, rub the meat, not the pan, with oil to avoid a smoking pan.

Don’t forget to season the meat before you cook it. A generous rubbing of Maldon Salt and some ground black pepper will make your steak a noticeably tastier piece of meat. Once you’ve cooked your steak, leave it for a few minutes before you eat it.

How to Chop an Onion Like a Pro
  • Hold the onion on its root end and cut vertically in half
  • Take one half and peel off brown papery layers, working from the top towards the root, until the flesh is exposed
  • Trim off the pointed end but not the root (this will hold the onion together until it’s fully chopped)
  • Place on a board cut-side down, and make a series of parallel cuts that stop just short of the root
  • The finer the required dice, the closer together the cuts should be
  • Then make a horizontal cut (with your knife parallel to the board) though the middle of the onion half, again stopping just short of the root
  • Finally, make a series of cuts across the onion at right angles to the earlier cuts, right up to the root
  • The diced flesh will fall away. As before, the finer your slices, the finer the dice
  • Repeat on the other half

BBQ Rules
  • Ensure that the BBQ is properly lit and ready before guests arrive
  • Provide enough seats; no one wants to be juggling food and drink while standing
  • Make sure there’s plenty of chilled beer, cider and wine 
  • Be aware of your neighbours; check the wind direction in relation to their windows
  • Cook food properly and thoroughly – you don’t want to poison your guests
  • Don’t make an exhibition of the cooking. Your guests should not feel coerced into applauding a one-man show
  • No comedy aprons, chef’s hats or swaggering machismo as the meat hits the grill