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Do you mix it up, or do you prefer it on top?

Now I know some things HAVE to be mixed: mac and cheese, carbonara. But meat sauces I like on TOP of the pasta, not mixed in. My DH likes it mixed in. He likes his pancakes on the bottom followed by butter and syrup, then his fried eggs, s&p UGH. When I have pancakes, I want JUST pancakes...and bacon. But all that mixed up? He mixes the ice cream topping into the ice cream. I do not. If it's grits and eggs, they get all mashed together. I like my grits in a seperate small bowl and eaten with a spoon on the side. He puts jelly in his biscuit and closes it like a sandwich; my jelly goes into a seperate little cup with a jam spoon. He butters his entire piece of bread at once, I butter as I go. And we've been happily married for almost 32 years! But it got me thinking - how do YOU do it?

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  1. I'm mostly a mix it up gal. Unless I'm in a restuarant, or at somebody else's home. At a restuarant, the bread is buttered as I break off pieces. At home is slathered and thick. So I would have to say that manners is the only thing that keeps me from making my dinners out look like a breakfast scramble.

    4 Replies
    1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

      Sadly, these days most people either don't know or don't care that proper table manners require buttering only as each bite-sized piece of bread or roll is broken off and consumed.

      1. re: greygarious

        So true. I was taught proper table manners (and others too) as a child and pretty much stick to them, at least in public, but usually at home, too. I probably would've buttered my bread like that even if I hadn't known it was "proper". Some old-fashioned ways should continue.

        1. re: bayoucook

          Interesting! I guess maybe I fall in the too young category to have learned this when I was younger (in my twenties), but I just like eating my bread and butter that way. I wonder if there was ever a deeper reason behind eating rolls this way?

          1. re: LPhila

            That's an interesting thought. Does anyone know? I'll try to find out.

    2. I am mostly a mixer, as well. The best way I could describe my mixing is this--at Thanksgiving, my favorite thing to do is layer my fork with turkey, mashed potatoes, veg, and stuffing, then swirl first in the gravy, then the cranberries. YUM!!!

      1. Definitely not a mixer. A friend once bought me a sectioned plate as a joke. Some foods just weren't made to touch each other!!

        2 Replies
        1. re: cheesecake17

          you remind me of mr. alka. it is a laugh whenever we go to indian buffet. all my food is "touching" -- even some chicken tikka on top of the chopped salad, with yogurt nearby, or coriander chutney pooled near the chick peas, adjacent to the saag which goes next to the makhani sauce. none of his food is "touching" -- not even curry on top of rice. <strangely, he is not like this at home!> i attribute the "separation" syndrome to an accounting/finance personality/background, because in accounting there is a separate category and or column for practically every type of individual asset or liability. ;-).
          fried eggs must be chopped into the grits, imo. grits alone? they better have a lot of butter or cheese, or both!

          topping on top of ice cream.
          bread buttered by-the-bite.
          biscuits? butter and jelly in a sandwich, or open-faced with maple syrup <one of each!>....or toasted later with strawberry preserves, open-faced.
          pasta we typically make the italian way, with the noodles and sauce together ('cause that's what mario and lidia say. ;-).

          1. re: cheesecake17

            Although I was never a picky eater, when I was a kid I didn't like any foods touching other foods. So instead of a large dinner plate, I would have each item on individual plates. Somewhere along the line I got over that and now I like things mixed.

          2. Mix it for the most part. I butter my whole bread. Spread the jam or the butter and smash it in between my roll. Pasta mixed. eggs would be separate than grits, but I don't like grits. Pancakes, butter and syrup on the side. Ice cream topping and ice cream on top and then I spoon and mix together. Turkey, a layer, stuffing, mashed, turkey and then gravy but once cut I slightly mix them up. I don't mix too much but a little. Somethings I do like separate on a plate and some not. Just depends what else is with the dinner.

            2 Replies
            1. re: kchurchill5

              I don't mind if the foods touch each other, I just don't tend to blend the butter into grits or the sauce into the pasta, etc. I like the taste of ice cream topping NOT mixed into the ice cream, makes a difference to me. But some things I wholeheartedly mix up - turnip greens and potlikker with cornbread - the best!

              1. re: bayoucook

                I guess in public I tend to be "more lady like" lol. I tend to try to fit in so everyone else feels comfortable. I think it has to do with those you are with. Each crowd is different.

            2. Let jfood give his opinion of the pasta with meat sauce or bolognese. He does both. He take a little of the sauce and mixes it through the pasta so each piece has some attached. Then he places the true portion on top.

              4 Replies
              1. re: jfood

                This is exactly right for me too jfood. Mix THEN top. Best of both worlds.....

                1. re: diablo

                  I love having everything cosy on the plate and all mixed up together...except I still have to butter each piece of roll and not the whole thing at once, some lessons just won't die, like walking and eating on the street - I know a bolt of lightning will strike me if I do that.

                  1. re: Athena

                    jfood almost had chocolate cake out the nose Athena. TY

                2. re: jfood

                  That's what I do too, j. After I drain the pasta I mix some of the sauce into it, then ladle the real stuff on top. I swear it tastes better that way! (I've done the drained pasta/sauce thing so long I didn't think about it before, but that's not mixing!).

                3. Mine too! He likes it saucy and all mixed up. I have explained that it's better on top but he won't listen.

                  He butters and drenches each pancake layer in syrup. I dip.

                  But I don't pull off bites of bread to butter. I'd probably eat the entire stick that way! I tried it once and felt like a phony.

                  I do like a busy pizza but I don't fold it over, so I guess that's topper. I love a busy ice cream all mixed in but once that ice cream starts to melt, I give it to him.

                  I really hate when the food gets watery and pools in my dish, but that's another topic.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Boccone Dolce

                    pancakes for me should be done in the combo method. butter melted into each pancke, then enough syrup to flavor, but not enough to make the pancake soggy. As i cut into bite size stacks (three high) each bite is dredged through more syrup/butter that is on the side of my plate.

                    dang, pancakes are sounding so good right now

                    1. re: Boccone Dolce

                      >>>>Mine too! He likes it saucy and all mixed up. I have explained that it's better on top but he won't listen.<<<

                      boccone dolce, you thing you! LOL!!

                    2. I'm a military man, I eat my food in a military manner. In all actuality, I don't like mixing things up. I tend to eat one item at a time and when finished, move on to the next item on the plate.

                      My mom says I've been like that since birth.

                      The exception is grits and sunny side up eggs. Those have to mixed together.