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to not understand why Americans call a main course an entrée?

(408 Posts)
flummoxedworried Sun 02-Apr-17 13:56:53

Does anyone understand why this happens?

canihaveacoffeeplease Sun 02-Apr-17 13:57:53

No help at all, but in Australia entree is a starter and main is a main which at least makes sense! Following with interest...

Plunkette Sun 02-Apr-17 14:01:12

Apparently it's an old usage of the word from the days when that dish would have been served before a roast.

As far as I'm aware North America is the only place to use entree in that way - everyone else uses the French convention.

StewieGMum Sun 02-Apr-17 14:05:22

Language development varies in different cultural contexts even when the main languages age is similar. It's really not a big deal.confused

TheMaddHugger Sun 02-Apr-17 14:13:22

Another Aussie following in interest.

ComputerUserNumptyTwit Sun 02-Apr-17 14:23:24

I assumed it was because you have the main course between the starter and pudding, entre meaning "between".

A quick Google shows however that I was wrong grin

WorraLiberty Sun 02-Apr-17 14:26:31

Stewie that did make me laugh! grin

I really don't think the OP thinks it's a big deal either.

wevegottobeathemdown Sun 02-Apr-17 14:29:00

I don't think the OP is rocking in the corner over it. smile but life is full of curiosity Stewie

Trills Sun 02-Apr-17 14:31:28

I definitely found it confusing the first time I was there.

I knew most American words I cam across because of TV, but not this one.

sonjadog Sun 02-Apr-17 14:32:45

I haven't checked this, so I may be completely wrong (and I can't be bothered googling now), but I think it is left over from the days when meals were 5+ courses long, so what we would call the "main" was in fact what was served as one of the course before the real main course.

JAPAB Sun 02-Apr-17 14:34:09

I don't know the answer to rhe OP. I'm more curious as to why they say "could care less" when they mean "couldn't care less". It just makes no sense.

AliceByTheMoon Sun 02-Apr-17 14:37:02

My parents are both fairly careful of their weights due to diabetes etc.

They took their first trip ever to the USA last year and went to NY. And e-mailed me with their wonder at how huge the portions were....because they were only ordering entrees everywhere they went.......

PyongyangKipperbang Sun 02-Apr-17 14:37:34

I have often wondered this too. It makes my teeth itch a little whenever I have heard it on TV!

eurochick Sun 02-Apr-17 14:39:14

It's really odd. The first time I went to the States I flicked past the starters to get to the mains and landed straight at dessert.

treaclesoda Sun 02-Apr-17 14:39:19

I didn't even know that Americans used the word in that way.

I love language discussions on mumsnet, I always learn something.

Plunkette Sun 02-Apr-17 14:54:38

Worra where does the OP say she thinks it's a big deal?

She just asked a question and got the answer.

I doubt it's keeping her up all night.

Since living in the US the language difference which has most flummoxed me is the lack of "and" when saying numbers.

E.g. "One hundred forty two"

Rather than "One hundred and forty two"

How I hadn't noticed this on TV and films before I have no idea.

MingeFog Sun 02-Apr-17 14:57:35

I wondered at this last night - watching a Try Guys video (the one where they all wear heels for a night out) and one of them ordered two entrees. I was thinking, 'blimey, he's never going to eat a main as well, is he?!'. Mystery solved thanks to this thread smile

shockthemonkey Sun 02-Apr-17 15:00:28

Plunk, Worra actually said she DIDN'T think the OP thought it a big deal


Trills Sun 02-Apr-17 15:02:15

French people probably think that British people don't say "and" enough either.

Vingt et un
Twenty and one

PyongyangKipperbang Sun 02-Apr-17 15:02:18

I get confused when I hear Americans say "Eighty seven hundred" and it takes me a second to work out that they mean Eight thousand seven hundred!

Plunkette Sun 02-Apr-17 15:02:33

Shock thanks, you are quite right, I meant to type Stewie

My apologies for erroneous name checking Worra flowers

Trills Sun 02-Apr-17 15:03:05

It was StewieGMum who said "It's really not a big deal" as if the OP thought it might be.

blackcherries Sun 02-Apr-17 15:03:48

They don't say 'fortnight' or e.g. 'half two' for the time either.
And they don't really have kettles.
Or butter in their sandwiches.

Or big chocolate easter eggs, only creme egg type things. Or Christmas crackers.

Going off on a tangent now...

Plunkette Sun 02-Apr-17 15:05:25

I spend quite a lot of time mentally translating things before speaking here, far more than I thought I would.

Recent misuse of "torch" caused some funny looks.

WhataHexIgotinto Sun 02-Apr-17 15:06:16

Plunk, Worra said she didn't think the OP thought it was a big deal, you're confusing her with another poster.

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