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Food-related sayings

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While growing up, my mother had two sayings that will stick with me forever (and that I still use):

1. Whenever she had something to eat that was rather insubstantial, she would always say, "That wasn't enough to fill a tooth with." Classic!

2. If someone was just standing around doing nothing or had a certain shifty look about them, she would say, "What are you doing? Posing for animal crackers?" This one just floors me. I love it.

What about you? Did/does your family have any favorite sayings that have to do with food or are somewhat food related?

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  1. my mother usually hit me with "you better finish your plate...there are children starving in china that would kill for that....

    and my dad usually used he/they/it has more of (insert whatever) than carter has liver pills....

    1. Though I was fairly slender growing up, my father now and then would give me a little slap on the rear, and say, "Must be jelly, 'cause jam don't shake like that!"

      1. I use food analogies all the time...

        As a maker of jewelry, I have never had a man give me a piece of jewelry. Two offered to buy me a stone so I could make my own ring.

        "Would you buy Thomas Keller a bag of groceries and tell him to make his own dinner?" I would respond... "Chef's like to eat out too..."

        They didn't understand and I still don't have bling from a guy.

        1. My German-born mother was a good cook but like most kids I had food dislikes (that I later outgrew). If I complained about something on my plate, her retort was "Fress dreck!". The literal translation is "eat dirt", but it is more insulting because while "essen" (as in delicatessen) is used for people, "fressen" is used for animals.

          1 Reply
          1. re: greygarious

            Love it!

          2. My dad is a real character he makes things up all the time.

            He told my brother that my mom was so sweet that she was actually made of sugar cookie dough.

            He used to blurt out ha ha ha Corn on the Cob!

            When cooking bacon before throwing the strips in the pan he was say "Take it Naked Bacon".

            He used to tease us that it was called veal-crow instead of velcro the soft fuzzy side was made out of veal and the scratchy side was made out of crow.

            My friends mom used to see "Oh cheese balls!" isn't of darn it.

            and every one knows the jokes...

            Who's the best? Chicken Breast
            Do you know why? Chicken Thigh

            9 Replies
            1. re: Sandwich_Sister

              dont forget
              "winner,winner,chicken dinner"

              1. re: Sandwich_Sister

                Two of my mother's swear word substitutions were "Son of a biscuit!" or "Fudge!" I find myself saying the first one on occasion. It's strangely satisfying to say.

                1. re: onceadaylily

                  Oh, HEY, oadl, you just reminded me of one. I had a friend whose mom was anti-epithet, and the most she'd say was, "Cheese and crackers got all muddy." If you say it fast, you'll get it.

                  1. re: mamachef

                    HA! That is hilarious. I'll have to share that one with my mom.

                    I'm probably going to be walking around the house and saying that all day.

                  2. re: onceadaylily

                    My mom's was "son of a sea cook" (whatever that meant). Dad was a big "fudge" person

                    1. re: gaffk

                      Perhaps "son of a sea cook" instead of you know what was a salute to Arsenic and Old Lace the film where they changed the line at the end from something along the lines of "I'm a bastard".

                      1. re: melpy

                        You know melpy, you may be right. Mom did love both the stage and screen versions.

                        Boy, you learn something new every day.

                  3. re: Sandwich_Sister

                    "GOD, What did you eat?" You know what that comment is for.

                    1. re: Sandwich_Sister

                      I don't think your friend's mom meant "darn it" when she said cheeseballs. :) Not if she put the emphasis on cheese.

                    2. In Spanish, my mom would say, "No quiero, no quiero, ponte en tu sombrero" anytime we would say we didn't want something but then would take it anyway and eat it all up. translated, it means, "don't want it, don't want it, put it in your hat!" whatever that means!

                      1. My BFF and I always say, "When in doubt, eat chocolate."
                        My dad used to say, "When you get hungry enough, a plate of air and a glass of water look mighty good. Now eat your dinner."
                        Mom: "It's Just Food." I don't relate to that one at all, and I heard it every day.

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: mamachef

                          And then there was always Mom's stock response to the daily question, "what's for dinner?" And her answer, inevitably, was "food, why?" I use it on my frat boys all the time, except for now since we're all on vacation.

                          1. re: mamachef

                            My aunt's response to "what's for dinner" is invariably "dirt and worms" which tickles me very time. Used to use it on her kids, now is using it on her grandkids.

                            1. re: GretchenS

                              if my wife says "i'm hungry" then i stick out my hand and shake her hand and say "nice to meet you hungry"...
                              she stopped after the first few dozen times...

                              1. re: srsone

                                puhahaha, that's so cute!!

                              2. re: GretchenS

                                my mom's used to be "come y calla", which means "eat it and shut up".

                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                  yes! my nanny (mother practically) growing up was from mexico and she'd say that to me constantly. especially about her spicy mexican food and my mom's nasty congealed leftovers. i'd laugh my butt off with her at the kitchen table. i'd sleep in her bed often from age 3-5 and she'd tell me "calle flaca!" in bed at night because i'd squirm around poking her with my bony knees and chatter like a maniac all night.

                          2. Holy mackerel, this is a fun thread!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Monica

                              I'll drink to that!

                            2. My favorite blessing of all time: "Praise the Lawd and pass the gravy."

                              1. Our family was always full of something: "Full of beans." "Full of mustard." "Full of piss and vinegar."

                                Apparently being so full gave us indigestion and made us cranky, because someone was often "in a rhubarb," especially those family members with the disapproving countenance of having been "weaned on a pickle."

                                For some unfathomable reason, if someone was pregnant, My family would say she'd been "served some partridge stew." I have no idea why.

                                I was confused as a child when I was always told I was "brown as a berry" in the summer. Brown berries didn't sound too appealing.

                                To the OP: Love, love love the "posing for animal crackers" line. I'm afraid I cannot resist stealing it! It's weirdly apt for some incomprehensible reason. Animal crackers DO look a little shifty, now that I think about it.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: cayjohan

                                  It's their beady shifty little wary jungle eyes.

                                  1. re: mamachef

                                    Yep. Definitely prone to anti-social behavior: http://www.buzzfeed.com/tsand/fun-wit...

                                  2. re: cayjohan

                                    "To the OP: Love, love love the "posing for animal crackers" line. I'm afraid I cannot resist stealing it! It's weirdly apt for some incomprehensible reason. Animal crackers DO look a little shifty, now that I think about it."

                                    Please, please feel free to use this cayjohan! And I agree, it is weirdly apt. When people first hear it they have a quizzical look on their face but the more they think about it the more it makes sense.

                                  3. "Posing for animal crackers!"

                                    I LOVE IT! lol

                                    1. and my daughter watches spongebob now...
                                      she says "tarter sauce" like patrick does...

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: srsone

                                        Good one, srsone! Funny, what kids pick up and use. (Or sometimes, not so funny.) for the longest time, when people would ask #2 son what he wanted to eat, his answer inevitably was, "French-Frahd Pertaters, please." (ref: Sling Blade.)

                                        1. re: mamachef

                                          how old was he? i'm picturing a maniacal 4 year old doing his best billy-bob impression.

                                          love it mamachef!

                                      2. If one of us were late in getting to the dinner table and everyone had started eating, my dad, a man of many sayings not all printable here, would invariably say "We waited for you just like one pig waits for another".

                                        1. My mother would say..." the apple doesn't fall from the tree"....or they must eat a lot of cookies...

                                          I was once sitting in a diner, having coffee and some pie, engrossed in some work that that I was reviewing for a meeting, when I really did not drink the coffee....the waitress said to me..." what, that's not your cup of tea?"

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: PHREDDY

                                            I was once sitting in a diner, having coffee and some pie, engrossed in some work that that I was reviewing for a meeting, when I really did not drink the coffee....the waitress said to me..." what, that's not your cup of tea?"
                                            -----------------------------------------------------------------
                                            Funny!!!

                                          2. Funny you mention in your original post about unsubstantial food, my dad used to say translated from Armenian to English, " I didn't understand anything from that"

                                            1. LOVE the animal crackers line!!

                                              i was at a friend's house - must've been 8 or 9 - there were a few of us all there for a sleepover. with our dinners we had baked potatoes. one of my friends (a guest) was kind of messing around with her potato. the mom looked at her and said, "What, are you waiting for Jesus to come and butter your potato for you? Ain't gonna happen, we're Jewish. So eat it."

                                              My best friend and I like to take occasional weekend trips together. This notoriously involves at least one night of picnicking in the hotel room. We always make salads. The very first trip we took together, I bought hearts of palm in a can... The hotel had no can opener, so I had to go down to the bar, who had to go to the next door restaurant to open my can. The next night, I bought a "vacation can opener," which surprisingly had no issue going on the plane... Our saying when we're leaving -- You can't go to the airport without a vacation can opener! (I totally forgot it last trip, and had to buy one, which was so crappy, it took us half an hour to use it... I bought another "less crappy" one the next night. We were at the Grand Canyon, so we picnicked quite a bit for lack of better dining options...)

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Emme

                                                "What, are you waiting for Jesus to come and butter your potato for you? Ain't gonna happen, we're Jewish. So eat it."

                                                ----------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                That's once for the books!

                                              2. "I'm toast"
                                                "you're an egghead"
                                                "quit acting like a toaster strudel"

                                                1. When we didn't like what was on our plate, Dad was famous for, "Hunger made the money eat pepper!"