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“My favorite animal is steak.”
Fran Lebowitz, journalist
"I'll have my steak medium rare with no pink."
anonymous restaurant customer
“To eat steak rare . . . represents both a nature and a morality.”
Roland Barthes, French critic (1915-1980)
“Waiter! Waiter! WA-Y-TER!.....Is that beef killed for my porterhouse steak I ordered last week?”
George G. Foster, columnist (1814-1856)
“I dined on what they called 'robber steak' - bits of bacon, onion, and beef, seasoned with red pepper, and strung on sticks and roasted over the fire, in the simple style of the London cat's meat!”
Jonathan Harker in Bram Stoker's ‘Dracula’ (1897)
“Soup does its loyal best, no matter what undignified conditions are imposed upon it. You don't catch steak hanging around when you're poor and sick, do you?”
Judith Martin (Miss Manners)
“The only time to eat diet food is while you are waiting for the steak to cook.”
Julia Child (1912-2004)
“To see the butcher slap the steak before he laid it on the block, and give his knife a sharpening, was to forget breakfast instantly. It was agreeable too - it really was - to see him cut it off so smooth and juicy. There was nothing savage in the act, although the knife was large and keen; it was a piece of art, high art; there was delicacy of touch, clearness of tone, skilful handling of the subject, fine shading. It was the triumph of mind over matter; quite.”
Charles Dickens (1812-1870) ‘Martin Chuzzlewit’
“Then there is the beefsteak. They have it in Europe, but they don't know how to cook it. Neither will they cut it right. It comes on the table in a small, round, pewter platter. It lies in the centre of this platter, in a bordering bed of grease-soaked potatoes; it is the size, shape, and thickness of a man's hand with the thumb and fingers cut off. It is a little overdone, is rather dry, it tastes pretty insipidly, it rouses no enthusiasm. Imagine a poor exile contemplating that inert thing," he sniffed scornfully; "and imagine an angel suddenly sweeping down out of a better land and setting before him a mighty porter-house steak an inch and a half thick, hot and sputtering from the griddle; dusted with fragrant pepper; enriched with little melting bits of butter of the most unimpeachable freshness and genuineness; the precious juices of the meat trickling out and joining the gravy, archipelagoed with mushrooms; a township or two of tender, yellowish fat gracing an outlying district of this ample county of beefsteak; the long white bone which divides the sirloin from the tenderloin still in its place; and imagine that the angel also adds a great cup of American home-made coffee, with the cream a-froth on top, some real butter, firm and yellow and fresh, some smoking hot biscuits, a plate of hot buckwheat cakes, with transparent syrup, could words describe the gratitude of this exile?”
Mark Twain (1835-1910) expressing his disdain for European notions about preparing and serving a piece of meat. ‘A Tramp Abroad’
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