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Foods you always "deconstruct"

2roadsdiverge Aug 2, 2011 11:18 AM

So what are the foods that you tend to pick apart to eat, rather than eating as a whole?

I'm not talking about charcuterie plates or sampler platters that are designed to be eaten separately. I'm also not talking about picking out the parts you don't like (such as onions in a salad or nuts on a brownie). I mean those foods where you eat all of one ingredient or part separate from the rest, before eating the rest.

Do you eat the frosting and cake separately?
Pick the pepperoni off your pizza before you eat the slice?

Does anyone have a spouse or friend who does this to your annoyance, or who gets annoyed by you doing it?

I have a friend who orders steak with mushrooms and onions, and every bite has to have meat, mushrooms, onions, as well as any sauce, all on the fork together. Meanwhile, I love mushrooms so much I eat them all first.

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  1. GraydonCarter Aug 2, 2011 12:21 PM

    Tines up or tines down?

    I usually have to reconstruct a Big Mac because one of the patties has slid halfway off the bun and the pickles are all stacked up instead of being somewhat distributed across the burger.

    4 Replies
    1. re: GraydonCarter
      2roadsdiverge Aug 2, 2011 01:10 PM

      Hah, i guess re-construction is a different question! It could include improperly tossed salads or pizza toppings that slid off the crust I guess ;)

      1. re: 2roadsdiverge
        alliegator Aug 3, 2011 01:40 PM

        And tacos. I'm a crazy person when it comes to taco re-construction!

        1. re: 2roadsdiverge
          huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:33 AM

          I sometimes "reconstruct" the overall dish when I eat sushi/sashimi or with elaborately plated and geometrically laid-out dishes (whether appetizers or entrees), including high-end stuff in fancy restaurants, as two examples in this direction.

          With sushi/sashimi I sometimes eat the pieces in a pattern that appeals to me at the moment (whether by taste or by visual design) and rearrange the remaining pieces and/or ginger/ and/or other garnishes into a new configuration, or an increasingly compacted recreation of the original arrangement.

          With elaborate apps/entrees I sometimes also rearrange the bits and pieces as I go along; or with those laid out in geometric patterns (apps, in particular) I do both deconstruction and recontruction - such as eating a finely chopped accompaniment laid out on the plate in a flat 'landscape' field in a geometric manner, by sweeping a part of the field up with my fork in the same diagonal (or whatever) direction at the same angle, and/or cutting the main bit in a complementary angle steadily piece by piece... At other times I just attack it and demolish it in short order. :-)

        2. re: GraydonCarter
          pdxgastro Aug 22, 2011 04:10 PM

          Oh my gosh, I'm a stickler for even distribution too! Pickles on hamburgers, for sure. But even when I make a sandwich, I fold round lunchmeat in half so that it has a straight edge, and then I line it up with the straight edge of the bread. I hate a bread bite with no meat! It's miserable.

        3. c
          CanadaGirl Aug 2, 2011 01:19 PM

          If you're not Canadian you won't get it, but I eat all of the layers in a Coffee Crisp bar one at a time, from the top down. Messy, but yummy.

          21 Replies
          1. re: CanadaGirl
            2roadsdiverge Aug 2, 2011 05:15 PM

            I know those candy bars, and I get you. Your post reminded me of the classic deconstructed food: Oreo cookies!

            1. re: 2roadsdiverge
              CanadaGirl Aug 2, 2011 05:28 PM

              Oh, but a Coffee Crisp is so much better! I especially love the thick layer of coffee-flavoured stuff in the middle. I'd buy just that part if I could - it's why I eat it layer be layer.

              1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                wattacetti Aug 3, 2011 08:32 AM

                Coffee Crisp has Oreos beat. I could always "convince" American colleagues to see things my way in exchange for a bar or two.

                The layer-by-layer eating is less messy with the Halloween-size bars. Also less fulfilling.

                1. re: wattacetti
                  CanadaGirl Aug 3, 2011 08:40 AM

                  True about the less mess with the Halloween bars. But, my favourite middle layer is thinner in the Halloween bars, so I'd rather deal with the mess :)

                  1. re: wattacetti
                    LeoLioness Aug 3, 2011 10:18 AM

                    I once had an Orange Coffee Crisp (limited flavor? It was either in Canada or England, I can't remember). I fear I'm now ruined for life.

                    1. re: LeoLioness
                      CanadaGirl Aug 3, 2011 10:56 AM

                      It may have been Canada, as I remember seeing them a while ago. I never had one, as I do not like the combination of orange and chocolate. You need to try the original sometime. Mmmmm, mmmmmm, mmmmmm.

                      1. re: CanadaGirl
                        LeoLioness Aug 3, 2011 11:59 AM

                        I can get the original ones around here (for a princely sum) and love it, but orange + coffee + chocolate = really, really love it.

                        1. re: LeoLioness
                          montrealeater Aug 6, 2011 03:45 PM

                          CanadaGirl, your patience impresses me. Faced with a Coffee Crisp, there is NO WAY that thing isn't down the hatch in less than 120 seconds.

                          1. re: montrealeater
                            CanadaGirl Aug 6, 2011 06:58 PM

                            I dare you to try it my way ;)

                  2. re: 2roadsdiverge
                    2roadsdiverge Aug 3, 2011 11:21 AM

                    Oh I wasn't comparing the two. Your post just reminded me that there are foods that are almost designed to be deconstructed.

                    I know they aren't the same as Coffee Crisp, but I eat Kit Kat bars layer by layer, from the top down. I consider it a victory if i can get a whole layer lengthwise without it breaking.

                    1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                      CanadaGirl Aug 3, 2011 11:50 AM

                      Oh, I knew you weren't comparing. I was just ranking ;)

                      1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                        beachmouse Aug 7, 2011 12:23 PM

                        I do the Kit Kats similarly, but first I nibble off the chocolate around the edges in order to expose the layers of cookie before stripping the cookie layers off one by one.

                        I've actually got a Coffee Crisp sitting in my pantry right now- the local Publix has been beefing up their UK junk food offerings lately, and I got one there to try since I've heard good things about them.

                        1. re: beachmouse
                          CanadaGirl Aug 8, 2011 05:30 AM

                          I wonder if the UK Coffee Crisp tastes the same as a Canadian one. I'm going have to try to find one and do a taste test :)

                        2. re: 2roadsdiverge
                          huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:49 AM

                          Never really got why oreos and other sandwich-type cookies are deconstructed by folks. All of these taste better to me when the components are eaten together, as they were designed to be.

                        3. re: 2roadsdiverge
                          greygarious Aug 4, 2011 06:15 PM

                          I once had a job as one of two people caring for lab animals at a hospital's small research facility. The 8 rhesus monkeys were intelligent creatures doomed to living in individual steel cages with nothing to entertain them. So we supplemented their Purina Monkey Chow with other foods we brought in. Usually fresh fruits and vegetables but on one occasion, neither of us remembered, so we gave each one of them an Oreo. They sniffed and examined. Then 5 of them ate their cookies as is, but the other 4 opened them and licked the filling first. I am quite sure they could not have encountered creme-filled cookies before....nobody needs to persuade ME that monkeys and man have a common ancestor!

                          1. re: greygarious
                            CanadaGirl Aug 4, 2011 06:36 PM

                            Love it!!!

                            1. re: CanadaGirl
                              alliegator Aug 5, 2011 12:47 PM

                              me too :)

                        4. re: CanadaGirl
                          sbp Aug 4, 2011 06:04 AM

                          Makes a nice light snack. It's how I like my coffee. Crisp.

                          Not Canadian - but originally from Buffalo. Wish we had Coffee Crisp here.

                          1. re: sbp
                            buttertart Aug 4, 2011 08:13 AM

                            I was dreadfully disappointed in a Coffee Crisp I bought in Brooklyn a while back (was Crunchie-shaped and in a boring wrapper, not the fun double-layered cigarette-packagy one I remember as a kid). Not what I remembered at all. Me or it?

                            1. re: buttertart
                              sbp Aug 4, 2011 05:15 PM

                              You got me; I haven't had one in decades! I did have some Mackintosh Toffee a few years ago (renamed Mac).

                              1. re: buttertart
                                CanadaGirl Aug 4, 2011 05:40 PM

                                It!! The package has changed from a few years ago, but the Coffee Crisps in Canada are perfectly rectangular and taste just as good; I've never been disappointed.

                          2. s
                            small h Aug 2, 2011 02:06 PM

                            I don't deconstruct bibimbap; I just refuse to un-deconstruct it. If that's even a word. I know that one is supposed to stir all the elements together into one big shmush, but I prefer to eat everything separately. It's like a buffet in a bowl.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: small h
                              2roadsdiverge Aug 2, 2011 03:43 PM

                              "un-deconstruct"? Isn't that just "construct"? LOL

                              I know what you mean about bibimbap, but I have to stir it up a bit. I get it in the sizzling stone bowl with an egg, so I need to cook the egg on the bowl. But I don't want to stir it too much so the rice gets nice and crispy. Mmmm.

                              1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                                small h Aug 2, 2011 04:51 PM

                                Yeah, you're right. "Construct" is probably the best word. And the shortest! I've had to fight off well-meaning waitresses who come at me armed with those super-long spoons when they see me stirring the egg into a ridiculously tiny area of rice, so as not to disturb the rest of the bowl. This probably makes me seem crazy, but I don't care.

                                1. re: small h
                                  huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:43 AM


                                  p.s. I don't particularly care for bibimbap myself. :-\

                                2. re: 2roadsdiverge
                                  amyzan Aug 6, 2011 06:52 AM

                                  I only mix the top layer of rice in with the toppings, so the bottom can crisp up while I dig in, because I can't wait, you know. Then, after the crispy bits have had time to form, I take the soup spoon and start scraping them up into the rest, so there are crispy bits in with what's left of the rest. This is my "best" stone bowl bibimbap.

                                  But, I am also realizing from this thread that I don't much deconstruct food, generally.

                              2. invinotheresverde Aug 2, 2011 04:23 PM

                                Grilled cheese. Crust first, then grilled bread peeled off, finished with the cheese/bread stuck to cheese.

                                5 Replies
                                1. re: invinotheresverde
                                  2roadsdiverge Aug 3, 2011 11:24 AM

                                  Whoa, now that is cheesy dedication!

                                  1. re: invinotheresverde
                                    Emme Aug 5, 2011 08:54 PM

                                    how i used to eat quesadillas!!

                                    1. re: Emme
                                      invinotheresverde Aug 7, 2011 05:15 AM

                                      "Used to"? Bah!

                                      1. re: invinotheresverde
                                        Emme Aug 7, 2011 10:03 AM

                                        allergies... the spirit lives on however.

                                        1. re: Emme
                                          invinotheresverde Aug 7, 2011 10:20 AM

                                          For shame. I shall do my part to eat your share, and then some.

                                  2. s
                                    sueatmo Aug 2, 2011 05:55 PM

                                    From a handful of mixed nuts, I might pick out the cashews, then the Brazil nuts. But mostly I don't deconstruct my food.

                                    6 Replies
                                    1. re: sueatmo
                                      pilotgirl210 Aug 4, 2011 03:04 PM

                                      OMGosh.......I will do the same with M&Ms. I eat all the brown ones, then the orange (my least favorite colors), then the green, which leaves just blues and yellows. My favorite colors. Even my kitchen is done in cobalt blue and lemon yellow.....tee hee.

                                      1. re: pilotgirl210
                                        pilotgirl210 Aug 5, 2011 01:42 PM

                                        Oops. Forgot the reds. Eat those after green :=)

                                        1. re: pilotgirl210
                                          jbsiegel Aug 6, 2011 12:14 PM

                                          Oh...no no no. The orange ones come first, then the yellow followed by green, blue and red. The last (because they taste best because they are "all chocolate" - LOL) are the browns. When they used to have two shades of brown, the light brown came first then the dark brown!

                                        2. re: sueatmo
                                          jbsiegel Aug 6, 2011 12:14 PM

                                          Almonds first, then macadamia, then Brazil and pecans. Then cashews last.

                                          1. re: jbsiegel
                                            lawkitty Aug 9, 2011 08:01 AM

                                            I always eat one variety at a time. Brazil nut first (my favorite!) walnut, cashew, almond, then hazelnut. Skip/pick out any peanuts; not worth my time unless they are in shell or in peanut butter! Wierd, yes, but true!

                                          2. re: sueatmo
                                            huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:46 AM

                                            I don't generally eat mixed nuts. I buy and eat single-variety nuts - kept in its own container/bag - even if I may have more than one variety at the same time.

                                          3. o
                                            odkaty Aug 2, 2011 06:02 PM

                                            Cake or cupcakes — cake first, then frosting. I do the same with cobblers — fruit then topping — unless dosed with cream. Ice cream doesn't work, but a splash (or two or three) of heavy cream makes the whole cobbler come together.

                                            1. Pixie Muse Aug 2, 2011 06:24 PM

                                              Oreo cookies would undergo open heart surgery when I was a kid.

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: Pixie Muse
                                                monavano Aug 3, 2011 08:38 AM

                                                +1 on Oreos

                                                1. re: Pixie Muse
                                                  ROCKLES Aug 3, 2011 02:19 PM

                                                  I still take apart the oreos--especially the double stuffed, then eat one the cookie, then get another and make a quadruple stuffed oreo. I will always be a kid at heart!!

                                                2. c
                                                  cocoagirl Aug 3, 2011 07:02 AM

                                                  sandwhiches- especially with two much bread

                                                  9 Replies
                                                  1. re: cocoagirl
                                                    buttertart Aug 3, 2011 01:16 PM

                                                    Sandwiches, because American sandwiches always have too much meat on them for my taste.

                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                      tatamagouche Aug 3, 2011 02:25 PM

                                                      Ditto sandwiches, although it has nothing to do with too much anything—it's more that rather than biting into them with both hands, I like to tear sections off and then eat them. I don't know why.

                                                      And I do tend to eat cake first, save frosting for last—if I bother with the cake at all.

                                                      1. re: tatamagouche
                                                        huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:14 AM

                                                        If I eat cake (rare) - I scrape off the icing, eat the cake, leave the icing behind.

                                                        1. re: huiray
                                                          tatamagouche Aug 8, 2011 02:58 PM

                                                          I like it when I'm with a companion who's like you—two pieces, they get all the cake, I get all the frosting, everybody's happy.

                                                          1. re: tatamagouche
                                                            huiray Aug 8, 2011 09:56 PM

                                                            I take it you love Danishes, pancakes & syrup, sugar pop cereal, other sugar bombs etc for breakfast?

                                                            1. re: huiray
                                                              tatamagouche Aug 9, 2011 05:47 AM

                                                              Actually, no—I rarely crave sweets (and especially not at breakfast)! It's like I get all my sugar needs met at special events where there's cake. Odd, I know.

                                                              1. re: huiray
                                                                srsone Aug 9, 2011 03:24 PM

                                                                gotta be Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs.........

                                                        2. re: buttertart
                                                          huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:15 AM

                                                          No, it's not that - it's because they're too big to fit into my mouth when intact.

                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                            cocoagirl Aug 9, 2011 07:17 AM

                                                            Definitely agree with the too much meat as well. Actually the only reason why I find Subway doable- not much filling

                                                        3. k
                                                          klyeoh Aug 3, 2011 07:49 AM

                                                          Australian pavlova. I grew up in Perth and this was like the go-to dessert for many lazy hosts/hostesses. I'll pick it apart, eat all the berries & fruits, dip some of them in the cream, and leave the sweet meringue till the end :-)

                                                          8 Replies
                                                          1. re: klyeoh
                                                            TheHuntress Aug 4, 2011 04:29 AM

                                                            Well, if you're from my home town you will understand that the only way to eat a Crunchie is to bite off all the chocolate and then eat the honeycomb separately. I don't think they do Crunchies in the US, although it is likely I shall be corrected.

                                                            1. re: TheHuntress
                                                              klyeoh Aug 4, 2011 04:42 AM

                                                              You can find Crunchies in the US now, where I spent 30% of my time between 2006-2009. Personally, I liked to bite a Crunchy (or Violet Crumble) bar all the way thru, and feel the outer chocolate layer mix in with the honeycomb :-)

                                                              My fave chocolate bar is still Cherry Ripe - now THAT is a bit harder to come by in the US! But I'm not complaining - after all, the best Aussie lamington I'd ever, EVER tasted was not in Australia, but by Alison Barakat (aka Bakesale Betty) in Oakland, California!

                                                              1. re: klyeoh
                                                                TheHuntress Aug 4, 2011 04:55 AM

                                                                I have attempted to deconstruct a Cherry Ripe, but it's just not possible, and I also have a tendency to deconstruct lamingtons too, now that you mention them :) I also do exactly the same thing with Magnum icecreams, bite off all the chocolate and then eat the ice cream.

                                                                1. re: TheHuntress
                                                                  klyeoh Aug 4, 2011 05:06 AM

                                                                  What everyone should deconstruct is one of those "apple strudels" from Corica in Northbridge - they are more like mille-feuille. My German friends visiting Perth never failed to be confused as to why we'd call these baked goods "apple strudels" :-D

                                                                  Corica's apple strudels became legendary amongst Singaporean tourists, and they'd lug boxes & boxes back home.

                                                                  1. re: klyeoh
                                                                    TheHuntress Aug 4, 2011 05:48 AM

                                                                    Hmmm, I guess I'm deconstructing one of those for lunch tomorrow.

                                                                    1. re: TheHuntress
                                                                      klyeoh Aug 4, 2011 06:13 AM


                                                                    2. re: klyeoh
                                                                      huiray Aug 9, 2011 07:33 AM

                                                                      Oh, you mean these? http://heart-murmur.blogspot.com/2009/08/corica-apple-strudels.html
                                                                      Heh... http://www.truelocal.com.au/business/...

                                                                2. re: TheHuntress
                                                                  CanadaGirl Aug 4, 2011 06:27 AM

                                                                  That's how I eat a Crunchie too.

                                                              2. monavano Aug 3, 2011 08:40 AM

                                                                Occasionally the top bun of a hamburger.
                                                                Wraps- too much redundancy most of the time, and I pick it off until the wrap is only one layer. Then it falls apart. Then I deconstruct it.

                                                                1. l
                                                                  Laurenjo28 Aug 3, 2011 08:51 AM

                                                                  I do it with sausage biscuits haha. I will eat the sausage then spread strawberry jam on the top and bottom slices of the biscuit and eat them seperately. Same with Poptarts. I'll eat the outer crust parts, then pick the frosting off of the top. I eat the outer, crunchy part of an eggroll first, then eat the filling.

                                                                  1. Peg Aug 3, 2011 09:19 AM

                                                                    Pretty much anything baked in pastry. I eat the filling then the pastry, no matter the kind of pastry or filling.

                                                                    1. c
                                                                      cgarner Aug 3, 2011 09:53 AM

                                                                      Lucky charms... when I was a kid, I always ate the cereal pieces first, leaving a bowl full of marshmallows and milk... Then I'd slurp out the milk and eat spoonfulls of soggy marshmallows

                                                                      I would so tediously make sure that every bite in the beginning had no marshmallows in them, to be honest, it's hard for me to not do that to this day

                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                      1. re: cgarner
                                                                        cleobeach Aug 3, 2011 10:46 AM

                                                                        My son sort of shields his bowl when my husband walks by as Daddy will see that wealth of hoarded marshmellows and can't stop himself from trying to dip into them.

                                                                        1. re: cleobeach
                                                                          2roadsdiverge Aug 3, 2011 11:23 AM

                                                                          Love it!

                                                                        2. re: cgarner
                                                                          caseyjo Jan 23, 2012 03:48 PM

                                                                          I used to do this as well! At one point, I attempted to do this with an entire box. I stole it from the kitchen, grabbed a couple mixing bowls, and started sorting. My intention was the return the cereal to the box and eat all the marshmallows, but of course my mom figured out what I was doing. She was not happy about it either.

                                                                        3. srsone Aug 3, 2011 11:54 AM

                                                                          any sandwich cookies...
                                                                          nutter butter...
                                                                          double stuff oreo...making double double stuff cookies...
                                                                          sugar wafer cookies ...
                                                                          any kind....

                                                                          1. m
                                                                            mamueller Aug 3, 2011 12:34 PM

                                                                            Definitely sandwich cookies - more to get rid of the sickly sweet middle so that I can savor the cookie part. Same with cake, but will usually just dispose of the icing except for a very thin layer. Pie most definitely. I will eat off the top crust, then the filling, then the bottom crust. Now, the edge of the crust is saved until last, unless it is a little burnt, in which case I will eat that first to get it out of the way. Always save the best bite for last, no matter what.

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: mamueller
                                                                              2roadsdiverge Aug 3, 2011 01:24 PM

                                                                              Saving the best bite for last is a whole 'nother discussion! Depending on the food I may want to eat the best bite first, so that I get it when it is still hot or crunchy or icy or distinct.

                                                                              1. re: mamueller
                                                                                srsone Aug 5, 2011 11:42 AM

                                                                                im the opposite...i want the sugary goodness inside of a cookie first ..cookie parts are secondary

                                                                              2. alliegator Aug 3, 2011 01:46 PM

                                                                                Goetze's caramel cream candies (I have not seen these in a very long time). I need to pop out the sugary center and let it dissolve in my mouth, then have the caramel.
                                                                                I need to find some of these.

                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                1. re: alliegator
                                                                                  srsone Aug 3, 2011 02:44 PM

                                                                                  cracker barrel has them...

                                                                                  1. re: srsone
                                                                                    alliegator Aug 5, 2011 12:48 PM

                                                                                    hey thanks!

                                                                                  2. re: alliegator
                                                                                    breakfastfan Jan 23, 2012 02:16 PM

                                                                                    +1, and my meme (grandmother) taught me to do that!

                                                                                  3. ipsedixit Aug 3, 2011 09:28 PM

                                                                                    The crust on a Klondike Bar.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                      2roadsdiverge Aug 4, 2011 12:25 AM

                                                                                      ohhhh! Good one!

                                                                                    2. RealMenJulienne Aug 4, 2011 06:00 AM

                                                                                      I was a weird kid. I used to peel off all the greasy coating off a Mcnugget to examine the spongy meat underneath, then eat the two seperately. Would also do that with Chef Boyardee ravioli. Don't do that anymore thankfully. The closest I come now is when eating a burger, hot dog, or sausage I always cut out a bit of the meat to try it independetly of the mustard, onions, or whatever else is on there.

                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: RealMenJulienne
                                                                                        Popkin Aug 4, 2011 09:43 AM

                                                                                        OMG lol I used to do that to my chicken nuggets too!

                                                                                        1. re: RealMenJulienne
                                                                                          Laurenjo28 Aug 4, 2011 11:29 AM

                                                                                          I still do that to chicken nuggets! I irritates my mom so much lol

                                                                                          1. re: RealMenJulienne
                                                                                            2roadsdiverge Aug 5, 2011 03:28 PM

                                                                                            I have a friend who likes fried breading more than almost anything else. She will order onion rings and eat the breading and leave the onions. Same thing with fried mushrooms and pickles. She'll eat the cheese from fried mozzarella, but only after the breading. I've even seen her order a corn dog, and throw away the hot dog after she ate all the breading.

                                                                                            1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                                                                                              tatamagouche Aug 6, 2011 05:59 AM

                                                                                              No offense to your friend, but I bet a butterfly dies every time she does that.

                                                                                            2. re: RealMenJulienne
                                                                                              GirlyQ Aug 6, 2011 08:39 PM

                                                                                              I still eat chicken nuggets/strips that way! I can't help it.

                                                                                            3. sbp Aug 4, 2011 06:11 AM

                                                                                              My son pulls every piece of pepperoni of a slice and creates a stack he calls "pepperoni mountain". Which he eats as the last bite.

                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                              1. re: sbp
                                                                                                buttertart Aug 4, 2011 08:11 AM

                                                                                                I love this.

                                                                                              2. e
                                                                                                emmie Aug 4, 2011 06:15 AM

                                                                                                Pickle spears. I scrape all the seeds out with my front teeth. Then chew out the middle, then eat the skin. And Twix: eat all the chocolate of the bar, then the caramel, then the plain cookie last. Now that I think of it, I usually pick off my pizza toppings and eat those, then tear off the crust and eat that, then finish with the "just cheese" pizza.

                                                                                                Actually, I go through phases where I don't like my food to touch so I deconstruct a lot of things!

                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: emmie
                                                                                                  cgarner Aug 5, 2011 09:37 AM

                                                                                                  pop the dark chocolate disc off the top eat that
                                                                                                  peel the caramel off of the creamy center, eat that
                                                                                                  scrape the creamy center off the hazel nut
                                                                                                  then finish with the hazel nut
                                                                                                  (I don't eat them when anyone's looking)

                                                                                                  1. re: cgarner
                                                                                                    CanadaGirl Aug 5, 2011 04:43 PM

                                                                                                    I do pretty much the same thing, except it is my mouth the whole time and the order is: chocolate top, hazelnut and filling, then the caramel last.

                                                                                                  2. re: emmie
                                                                                                    shanagain Aug 7, 2011 10:09 AM

                                                                                                    Ditto on Twix!

                                                                                                    1. re: emmie
                                                                                                      dulce lover Aug 19, 2011 12:15 PM

                                                                                                      Snickers....first the sides, then the bottom, then the nougat, then the rest...chocolate, peanuts, and caramel...yum!

                                                                                                      BTW, learned this from watching my mom eat them like this. Thanks, Mom!

                                                                                                    2. GraydonCarter Aug 4, 2011 08:27 AM

                                                                                                      When I first saw this topic, I thought it was going for "deconstructed food" in the haute cuisine sense, "to break apart and then reconstruct in a new manner." Or serving a dish in a deconstructed manner, like an apple pie that is presented as a puffed pastry with the apple filling prepared separately and poured over the pastry rather than filling it. Has anyone tried desconstructed dishes at home? The same ingredients prepared in a form different from the original, then recombined again. The look is different, but when you eat the dish you got the same flavor sensation as the original.

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                                                                        2roadsdiverge Aug 5, 2011 03:26 PM

                                                                                                        That was actually my inspiration for the topic, GraydonCarter. A friend and I were talking about the trend of deconstructing dishes on shows like Top Chef. This took us to talking about how we deconstruct certain dishes all the time.

                                                                                                      2. Emme Aug 5, 2011 09:06 PM

                                                                                                        omelettes - eat filling first, then eggs (which is why i hate the frittata/pancake style omelette)
                                                                                                        reese's PB cups - eat chocolate off first, then PB center
                                                                                                        kit kat - each chocolate off then eat each wafer layer
                                                                                                        eggplant - eat the peel off first
                                                                                                        broccoli/cauliflower - eat the stalks first

                                                                                                        8 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                          CanadaGirl Aug 5, 2011 09:14 PM

                                                                                                          How do you get the chocolate off a Reese's cup without smearing the peanut butter? I'm perplexed :)

                                                                                                          1. re: CanadaGirl
                                                                                                            dagrassroots Aug 5, 2011 10:53 PM

                                                                                                            I do it too. Nibble the outside chocolate rim then peel off the top and the bottom .

                                                                                                            1. re: dagrassroots
                                                                                                              Emme Aug 6, 2011 10:32 AM


                                                                                                              1. re: dagrassroots
                                                                                                                sheilal Aug 10, 2011 08:12 AM

                                                                                                                I do the exact same thing with a Snickers fun-size candy bar. Chocolate is eaten first, then the nougaty, peanuty center.

                                                                                                                1. re: sheilal
                                                                                                                  eclecticsynergy Aug 14, 2011 03:32 AM

                                                                                                                  Used to eat Snickers that way when I was a kid- chocolate edges first, then the bottom, then the nougat, and finally the caramel with the chocolate top. Still do it that way if I'm eating one at home.

                                                                                                                  1. re: eclecticsynergy
                                                                                                                    CanadaGirl Aug 14, 2011 07:47 AM

                                                                                                                    Do you eat the peanuts with the nougat or with the caramel?

                                                                                                                    1. re: CanadaGirl
                                                                                                                      eclecticsynergy Aug 15, 2011 01:19 AM

                                                                                                                      Peanuts for me go with the caramel. Actually, what I was visualizing when I posted was a Milky Way, which receives the same treatment.

                                                                                                                      It's a rare indulgence these days, but I'll have to buy myself one or the other now that the seed's been planted. Or the nut...

                                                                                                              2. re: CanadaGirl
                                                                                                                cleobeach Aug 15, 2011 02:10 PM

                                                                                                                You put them in the freezer first, works particularly well with the mini sized cups.

                                                                                                            2. Firegoat Aug 5, 2011 11:04 PM

                                                                                                              Three musketeer candy bars. Eat the chocolate first, then the gooey, nasty looking filling. I've also been known to pull the onions out of onion rings and just eat the breading, but usually only if I think the onions are too thick and/or slimey.

                                                                                                              1. d
                                                                                                                dinnerwithfox Aug 6, 2011 03:20 AM

                                                                                                                I eat like a child to be honest, I cant just eat something as is.

                                                                                                                I must play with my food and pull it apart and only eat what I want to eat, leaving the rest.

                                                                                                                I dont do this at other peoples homes of course or restaurants, I think that'd be rude of me to do!

                                                                                                                But in the privacy of my own home (or with close friends) I let my inner child come out

                                                                                                                1. j
                                                                                                                  jbsiegel Aug 6, 2011 12:18 PM

                                                                                                                  I pull EVERYTHING apart. My basic philosophy is save the "best" for last!

                                                                                                                  So...any kind of bread is eaten crust first followed by the insides. Any cake / cupcake - frosting last. Crumb cake - crumb topping last. Eggs - yolk last. Cookie bars are usually eaten in layers (if possible).

                                                                                                                  I'm also really bad about saving the "middle" of something for last (thinking it must be the best). So...I eat around the edge of a hamburger first, around the edge of cookies, etc.

                                                                                                                  My husband thinks I'm a lunatic!!!

                                                                                                                  1. j
                                                                                                                    jamieeats Aug 6, 2011 12:25 PM

                                                                                                                    almost everything, actually. i tend to pick one piece out at a time and go so far with pizza to eat the toppings, then the cheese, then the sauce, then the inside of the crust...of course i only do the real picking apart when i am at home. when at restaurants, i order things like fish or meat that can't really be picked apart separately, or a salad where it's quite easy to do.

                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: jamieeats
                                                                                                                      dratlover Aug 6, 2011 07:27 PM

                                                                                                                      I am with many of you.
                                                                                                                      American tacos must be deconstructed so that cheese lies next to meat, then add back lettuce and tomato.
                                                                                                                      M&Ms...eat all colors but red, yellow, and green first. Then arrange them to look like little stoplights.
                                                                                                                      Three Musketeers....chocolate eaten first.
                                                                                                                      Kit Kats...layer by layer...I am an expert.

                                                                                                                      1. re: dratlover
                                                                                                                        jamieeats Aug 7, 2011 09:25 AM

                                                                                                                        i eat the chocolate off of my 3 musketeers first too! i also try to do the same with snickers and milky way, but those can be a little more challenging to deconstruct...luckily i don't eat too many candy bars.

                                                                                                                        1. re: jamieeats
                                                                                                                          jbsiegel Aug 7, 2011 12:13 PM

                                                                                                                          I do the EXACT same thing with my 3 Musketeers (one of my all-time fav candy bars) and MIlky Ways. Not really a huge Snickers fan. I like to put them in the fridge - easier to eat the chocolate off.

                                                                                                                    2. shanagain Aug 7, 2011 10:10 AM

                                                                                                                      Fried chicken must be deconstructed. I use the chicken skin to scoop up gravy or mashed potatoes (or both).

                                                                                                                      Yes, I'm five and like eating with my fingers, messily.

                                                                                                                      1. huiray Aug 8, 2011 07:21 AM

                                                                                                                        Fried eggs, sunny-side up. I cut off the whites bit by bit, eating as I go along, leaving just the yolk with the residual edging of egg white - then I slide the egg yolk carefully onto my fork and pop the whole thing into my mouth. I get mildly annoyed if the yolk breaks on the plate or before it gets into my mouth.

                                                                                                                        14 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: huiray
                                                                                                                          small h Aug 8, 2011 01:15 PM

                                                                                                                          I do this, too, sometimes. But only when I'm alone, as I've seen dining companions react negatively.

                                                                                                                          1. re: small h
                                                                                                                            huiray Aug 8, 2011 01:39 PM

                                                                                                                            Really? Interesting. What are their objections?

                                                                                                                            1. re: huiray
                                                                                                                              small h Aug 8, 2011 01:57 PM

                                                                                                                              I can only speculate based on the alarm I've seen in their eyes, but it probably has to do with an egg yolk looking like an awfully big thing to eat in one bite (even though it isn't, since it squishes down).

                                                                                                                              1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                huiray Aug 8, 2011 02:07 PM

                                                                                                                                Ehh...ignore them - or reassure them that there is no reason for concern!
                                                                                                                                If someone said something snarky about how I eat these sunny-side-up eggs, I would tell them they need to fixate upon something else to obsess about. ;-)

                                                                                                                                1. re: huiray
                                                                                                                                  shanagain Aug 8, 2011 02:22 PM

                                                                                                                                  I think it probably just alarms us "dippers." Or the thought of not dipping makes us dippers sad, I think. ;-)

                                                                                                                                  1. re: shanagain
                                                                                                                                    cgarner Aug 9, 2011 12:12 PM

                                                                                                                                    it makes the toast very lonely when you don't use it to mop up the yolk

                                                                                                                                    1. re: cgarner
                                                                                                                                      huiray Aug 9, 2011 12:54 PM

                                                                                                                                      Eh, the toast is just fine with butter and jam, chomped on without benefit of egg yolk. For that matter, toast + egg yolk is faintly repulsive to me. In fact, I even often skip the toast altogether when having this kind of breakfast. :-)

                                                                                                                                      1. re: cgarner
                                                                                                                                        dump123456789 Aug 10, 2011 02:56 PM

                                                                                                                                        What about egg yolk with a toast chaser ? Hold the whiteless egg yolk in your mouth, then start eating the toast. It mixes in your mouth, so none of the yolk is wasted by being left behind in streaks on the plate.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: huiray
                                                                                                                                      small h Aug 19, 2011 02:38 PM

                                                                                                                                      So there I was, on vacation earlier this week, having breakfast in Newport, RI with my partner. Breakfast came with Portuguese bread, which does not pair well with egg yolk. I says to the guy, I'm going to eat these yolks whole, and he says, oh, please don't. I told him to look away. You have inspired me!

                                                                                                                                      1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                        huiray Aug 19, 2011 05:39 PM

                                                                                                                                        (((BIG GRIN)))

                                                                                                                                        1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                          GraydonCarter Aug 22, 2011 02:26 PM

                                                                                                                                          Portuguese bread? Like sweet bread?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                                                                                                            small h Aug 22, 2011 02:40 PM

                                                                                                                                            Yes, it was challah-esque. Or brioche-y. Depending upon your ethnic frame of reference.

                                                                                                                                2. re: huiray
                                                                                                                                  DunkTheBiscuit Aug 9, 2011 05:24 AM

                                                                                                                                  Me also, with the fried eggs. When I was a kid my gran used to give me fried egg sandwiches and I'd nibble round and round the whole thing until I was left with just the yolk between two yolk shaped pieces of bread, then glomph the whole thing so the yolk exploded in my mouth. I may still do that sometimes...

                                                                                                                                  Other things. Custard slices - I'll hold them upside down by the very edges, peel off the bottom layer of pastry then use it to scoop up some of the custard, until I can eat the top/bottom layer of iced pastry with just a thin layer of custard. Pies - I pick out the nicer looking bits of pastry to leave until last. Muffins - I break off the top and eat the stump first.

                                                                                                                                  All these are things I do at home. When I'm out and about, the only time I really start fiddling with my food is when it's a sandwich that's piled too high to fit in my mouth. Then it's lid off, pull out bits to make it more polite to eat, replace lid.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: DunkTheBiscuit
                                                                                                                                    huiray Aug 9, 2011 12:58 PM

                                                                                                                                    "...then glomph the whole thing so the yolk exploded in my mouth..."
                                                                                                                                    ...and that was and still is quite a nice mouth experience...

                                                                                                                                3. chefmindy Aug 8, 2011 07:43 AM

                                                                                                                                  I have this habit of eating my lasagna in layers. Which makes no sense to me because lasagna is delicious in a whole piece! I also peel off the toppings of my pizza and eat the dough and sauce first. I pick the cheese off of cheese buns and eat it first.

                                                                                                                                  1. j
                                                                                                                                    jester99 Aug 10, 2011 08:47 AM

                                                                                                                                    dumplings i bite a small hole and eat the inside first and then the skin afterwards which i drench in whatever condiment i am using.

                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                    1. re: jester99
                                                                                                                                      tatamagouche Aug 10, 2011 03:41 PM

                                                                                                                                      Yay black vinegar.

                                                                                                                                    2. i
                                                                                                                                      Isolda Aug 10, 2011 11:06 AM

                                                                                                                                      Pizza, if it is the kind where they put the cheese over all the toppings. That style is less common here, but when I encounter it--really, they should put warning signs on the door--I peel the cheese off, cut it into small pieces, then put some of them back on the the other toppings.

                                                                                                                                      1. r
                                                                                                                                        rhumphrey205 Aug 15, 2011 12:07 PM

                                                                                                                                        Sandwiches, especially steak sandwiches. I eat a few bites of the sandwich itself, then just give up, open it, and eat the parts that are the tastiest (like the steak)! :)

                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                        1. re: rhumphrey205
                                                                                                                                          ForFoodsSake Aug 27, 2011 04:57 PM

                                                                                                                                          Same here with gyros and burritos. Most of the time I'll eat them like normal, but I love to deconstruct them and eat one thing at a time!

                                                                                                                                        2. Jay F Aug 15, 2011 12:22 PM

                                                                                                                                          I don't do any of these things except the one with M&Ms (brown, orange, yellow, red first, then I keep the blue and green ones for tomorrow--only if I'm sitting at a table, though). I can't imagine taking a Kit Kat bar apart layer by layer. That's such a lot of work.

                                                                                                                                          1. pinehurst Aug 15, 2011 12:49 PM

                                                                                                                                            As a child, with Hoodsie cups, I would always eat all the chocolate, then the vanilla. I have a beloved nephew with Asperger's who eats every meal and snack color-sorted. His rule is green first, white food never. I don't think we even notice food deconstruction anymore!

                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: pinehurst
                                                                                                                                              huiray Aug 15, 2011 04:17 PM

                                                                                                                                              Interesting. So - your nephew would never eat things like rice, most types of bread, vanilla ice cream, white-skinned beans/seeds etc?

                                                                                                                                              1. re: huiray
                                                                                                                                                pinehurst Aug 16, 2011 08:45 AM

                                                                                                                                                White bread has to be toasted. His mom stirs ketchup into mashed potatoes. Vanilla ice cream is out. I'm sure he's had cannellini beans *in* richly colored things, like minestrone, but he wouldn't go for them in any state close to "as is". He likes fried rice, and brown rice, but yeah, not white.

                                                                                                                                            2. l
                                                                                                                                              lunaburning Aug 15, 2011 04:12 PM

                                                                                                                                              Cinnamon rolls. I always have to un-spiral them before I eat them.

                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: lunaburning
                                                                                                                                                2roadsdiverge Aug 16, 2011 10:26 AM

                                                                                                                                                Me too! Great example.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: lunaburning
                                                                                                                                                  Emme Aug 16, 2011 07:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                  eat from out to in... i used to scrape all the icing toward the center to have the most frosted bites at the end...

                                                                                                                                                2. c
                                                                                                                                                  CyndiMartin Aug 15, 2011 06:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                  I deconstruct all candy bars. I can't enjoy them just biting off a chunk.

                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: CyndiMartin
                                                                                                                                                    srsone Aug 15, 2011 07:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                    the 100 grand bar

                                                                                                                                                    eat the chocolate/rice crispy coating off first ..then the chewy center....

                                                                                                                                                  2. sheilal Aug 16, 2011 06:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                    I have to eat Nutty Buddy Bars one peanut-buttery layer at a time.

                                                                                                                                                    1. pdxgastro Aug 22, 2011 04:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                      Does anyone break open an onion ring and pull the onion out of it and eat it? And then eat the breading?

                                                                                                                                                      Taco truck tacos. They give you 2 tortillas with the filling. I observed my friend sliding one tortilla from under its mate and then divide the filling between them. Now I do it too.

                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: pdxgastro
                                                                                                                                                        2roadsdiverge Aug 27, 2011 02:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                        I have a friend who does that with onion rings, but she discards the onion. She just wants the breading. She eats the bread off a corn dog and tosses the meat, too.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: 2roadsdiverge
                                                                                                                                                          pdxgastro Aug 27, 2011 04:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                          Such a waste.

                                                                                                                                                        2. re: pdxgastro
                                                                                                                                                          Munkipawse Jan 23, 2012 01:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                          i noticed my friends doing the same thing too and i started doing it as i liked eating two smaller tacos rather than one big messy stuffed one.

                                                                                                                                                        3. d
                                                                                                                                                          daintree Aug 22, 2011 04:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                          Does "deconstructing" a beer bottle count? ;)
                                                                                                                                                          For some reason, I *always* peel the labels off my beer bottle as I drink them. Eventually, I get a few naked bottles on the table and some fairly intact labels. Sometimes, if it's been a particularly good night out (or a damn good beer), I'll save the labels and stick them in my notebook. :D

                                                                                                                                                          1. steakman55 Aug 22, 2011 04:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                            I detest stacked foods, with the meat on top of the vegetables on top of the mashed potatoes, etc., except for dessert. I always spread it back around on the plate like God intended it to be.

                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: steakman55
                                                                                                                                                              ForFoodsSake Aug 27, 2011 05:02 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Me too. I always deconstruct these types of presentations back into their own little piles. I just like eating one thing at a time!

                                                                                                                                                            2. 2
                                                                                                                                                              2roadsdiverge Oct 31, 2011 09:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                              Pop-Tarts. I always eat the edges first, so that the top and bottom pieces are only held together by the filling. Then when i take a bite I can separate them, or even peel them apart before i eat them.

                                                                                                                                                              1. SeaSide Tomato Oct 31, 2011 11:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                                Burgers often come served open-faced with the lettuce and tomato on the top bun and the burger on the bottom bun.

                                                                                                                                                                I have to have my burgers(from the bottom up): bun, tomato, lettuce burger (toppings like bacon pickles/onions if applicable) then bun.

                                                                                                                                                                So-when a burger is served to me this way, I can't just close it up. I have to remove the L&T, close top bun over the cheesey burger, flip it over, re-insert L&T on the bottom (add my ketchup, etc) then eat.

                                                                                                                                                                It's not that I'm a fanatic--it stays to gether better this way--especially if the tomato is on the very bottom.

                                                                                                                                                                Ok, I guess am a fanatic about it.

                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: SeaSide Tomato
                                                                                                                                                                  huiray Oct 31, 2011 12:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  I've never eaten a burger that did not fall apart about halfway through or so, unless I "deconstructed" it substantially before chowing down. Or, stuff just spilling out from the sides/opposite side of the now-soggy-and-breaking-up-bun by the 1/2 to 2/3 way through. So "deconstruction" is necessary for me if I want to ameliorate the mess when I eat a burger. Yes, I am talking about restaurant burgers/burger joints. (At eatouts etc at home or at friend's places I can choose what to put onto the bun or have on the side and munch along with the meat patty+bun)

                                                                                                                                                                2. s
                                                                                                                                                                  sasha1 Nov 1, 2011 08:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  I used to peel bagels, eating the crunchy outside entirely before the chewy middle. The peeled naked bagels looked pathetic and pasty, kind of like the first time one goes to the beach after a long winter...

                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sasha1
                                                                                                                                                                    jbsiegel Nov 2, 2011 05:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                    I **STILL** peel bagels (and soft pretzels)!! And, the chewy middle is REALLY good if you squish it a bit before biting off a piece. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jbsiegel
                                                                                                                                                                      sasha1 Nov 2, 2011 09:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                      Oh I didn't mean to imply it wasn't good. My favorite kind to do that with used to be spinach bagels. I do prefer the crunchy bits though. It's likely why I started this odd practice in the first place :)

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sasha1
                                                                                                                                                                        jbsiegel Nov 2, 2011 11:40 AM

                                                                                                                                                                        Funny...I prefer the doughy bits. Actually, I like to eat most of the "edges" off of anything before the middle - cookies, bread, hamburgers, you name it!

                                                                                                                                                                  2. h
                                                                                                                                                                    HillJ Jan 23, 2012 01:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    On the rare occassion I eat a muffin, bottom first-top last.

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