Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The American Woman's Cookbook (1942) - Table Service - Order of Service

As I mentioned previously, from time to time I will share tidbits from "The American Woman's Cookbook" (1942 edition) with you.
From page 80:

In many houses the hostess is served first. This is a relic of the old custom of taking it for granted that the giver of the feast prove the absence of poison by first tasting of the food or drinking of the beverage! Some hostesses too justify this custom by maintaining that, when complicated foods are served, the hostess indicates to her guests the methods by which they can most conveniently serve themselves.

However, the custom of serving the honor guest first is growing, and many hostesses now insist on giving the chief guest this additional compliment.

The former custom of serving all the ladies first and the gentlemen afterward is no longer in vogue, for this method consumed too much time and delayed the service. Now guests are served in the order in which they are seated, usually beginning with the honor guest or the hostess and proceeding to the right.

Hmmm, usually at our house we just tell everyone to dig in!

1 comment:

  1. I am BIG on waiting for everyone to be seated and the hostess taking the first bite. This was one thing I gleaned from my parents and years in the sorority house. However, Dillon and I have often found ourselves in situations where the hostess won't sit down or out to eat when the hostess is either the person who invited us or we or celebrating....or the oldest person at the table. They usually have no clue why we are waiting and waiting and waiting. So, to all of the hostesses out there...sit down, the kitchen will wait. :)