meal


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Related to meal: meal plan

cat in the meal-tub

obsolete A surprise attack or ambush; a hidden or unseen danger. Primarily heard in US, South Africa. Many people want to legalize marijuana but are in denial of the cats in the meal-tub that may come with doing so. The young political candidate waited like a cat in a meal-tub for his rival's sordid history to come to public attention.
See also: cat

a few fries short of a Happy Meal

A pejorative phrase meaning not very intelligent or of questionable mental capacity. It can appear in many different forms and variations (for example: a few bricks shy of a load, a few cards shy of a full deck, etc.). Every time Paul tells me about his latest conspiracy theory, I can't help thinking that he's a few fries short of a Happy Meal.
See also: few, fries, happy, meal, of, short

Meals on Wheels

A program that organizes food delivery to the elderly, ill, and other people who cannot leave their homes or cook for themselves. Before he went into a nursing home, my grandfather got food delivered to him by Meals on Wheels.
See also: Meal, on, Wheel

meal ticket

A person or thing used to provide permanent financial income. This new business was supposed to be my meal ticket, but it's costing me more money than I'm making. I'm a model, so my face is my meal ticket, and I can't afford to have a blemish!
See also: meal, ticket

square meal

A wholesome, nutritious meal. The hot lunch program at school provides square meals for underprivileged children.
See also: meal, square

enjoy your meal

An expression said by a server upon serving food in a restaurant. Here's the pasta for you, and the salmon for you, sir. Enjoy your meal.
See also: enjoy, meal

make a meal (out) of (something)

1. To prepare and eat some food and consider it a full meal, even though it may not resemble a traditional meal. I haven't had a chance to go to the grocery store, but we can probably make a meal out of whatever's left in the fridge. Back in college, we often made a meal of crackers and peanut butter—it was all we could afford!
2. To do more work than is necessary when completing some task. I just need a rough summary of the numbers for the report—don't make a meal out of it.
See also: make, meal, of

Enjoy your meal,

an expression used by food servers after the food has been served. The waiter set the plates on the table, smiled, and said, "Enjoy your meal." Waiter: Here's your dinner. Jane: Oh, this lobster looks lovely! Tom: My steak looks just perfect. Waiter: Enjoy your meal.
See also: enjoy, meal

make a meal of something

 
1. to eat something. The cat made a meal of the fish. They made a meal of the roast beef and enjoyed it very much.
2. to eat enough of something to consider it or have it as a full meal. I really don't want to make a meal of lettuce alone. Can we make a meal of this turkey, or should we save some for sandwiches?
See also: make, meal, of

square (meal)

a good and nutritious meal. (Always with quantifier when square is used without meal.) I need three squares a day—at least. The old beggar looks like he could use a square meal.

meal ticket

A person or thing depended on as a source of income, as in Magic Johnson was a real meal ticket for his team, or Her interpersonal skills will be her meal ticket when she goes into sales. This metaphoric expression alludes to the earlier practice of handing out tickets that entitle their holder to a meal. [Early 1900s]
See also: meal, ticket

square meal, a

A substantial or complete meal, as in These airlines never feed you; I haven't had a square meal on one yet. [Mid-1800s]
See also: square

make a meal of something

or

make a meal out of something

mainly BRITISH
If someone makes a meal of something or makes a meal out of it, they spend too much time or energy on it. He's only been asked to write a brief essay but he's making such a meal of it. Only spend an hour or so on the task — don't make a meal out of it.
See also: make, meal, of, something

a meal ticket

If you describe something or someone as a meal ticket, you mean that they are a way of getting all the money that you need throughout your life. A degree has never been a meal ticket, but the recession is making life for graduates tougher than ever. He was wealthy. I think she saw him as a life-long meal ticket.
See also: meal, ticket

a square meal

A square meal is a large, healthy meal that makes you feel you have eaten enough. The troops were tired and hadn't had a square meal for five days. Do you survive on yogurt at lunchtime while your partner wants a square meal? Note: On sailing ships in the past, sailors ate off square wooden plates.
See also: meal, square

meals rejected by Ethiopians

n. military rations, MRE = meal ready to eat. (Cruelly designated at a time when Ethiopians where starving to death. Implying that not even starving humans would eat MREs. That said, it is also known that such rations have been rejected by hungry people who desire more familiar food.) The reporter was embarrassed to describe the MREs as “meals rejected by Ethiopians.”
See also: meal, reject

square

1. mod. old-fashioned; law-abiding; stodgy. Man, you are really square.
2. n. a person who behaves properly. You are a square if I ever saw one.
3. and square joint n. a tobacco cigarette, compared to a marijuana cigarette. I’ll take a reefer. I’ve heard that square joints will give you cancer.
4. tv. to settle or to make something right. Will twenty bucks square the matter?
5. Go to square (meal).

square (meal)

n. a good and nutritious meal. (Always with quantifier when square is used without meal.) I need three squares a day—at least. The old soak looks like he could use a square meal.
See also: meal, square

square

verb
References in classic literature ?
Piperson was very affable; he slapped Pigling on the back, made lots of porridge and forgot to lock the meal chest.
He filled us so full of meal that I shall sweat meal for a week.
There was one seedy French waiter, who was attempting to learn English in a house where he never heard anything but French; and the customers were a few ladies of easy virtue, a menage or two, who had their own napkins reserved for them, and a few queer men who came in for hurried, scanty meals.
said the Miller, throwing the great sack of meal from his shoulder to the ground, "and who are those with thee?
I remember that on one occasion when I went into one of these cabins for dinner, when I sat down to the table for a meal with the four members of the family, I noticed that, while there were five of us at the table, there was but one fork for the five of us to use.
He busied himself in arranging Lady Greystoke's meal upon the tiny table at one side of her cabin.
Following the meal Dejah Thoris and The Warlord played at jetan, the Barsoomian game of chess, which is played upon a board of a hundred alternate black and orange squares.
It was evident that his night's hunting had been unsuccessful and that he had expected to make a meal off of us.
When the boy had torn the steaming carcass across and cooled it, Jerry's meal began; nor did the meal cease till the last sliver of meat had been stripped and tongued from the bones and the bones crunched and crackled to fragments and swallowed.
While he hammered away at his metals the Dog slept; but when, on the other hand, he went to dinner and began to eat, the Dog woke up and wagged his tail, as if he would ask for a share of his meal.
In sage and silent companionship of two, they went flying, noiseless, along the quiet lanes in search of a meal.
It was, for nearly two years after this, rye and Indian meal without yeast, potatoes, rice, a very little salt pork, molasses, and salt; and my drink, water.
Dinner, which came at noon in the Harrington homestead, was a silent meal on the day of the Ladies' Aid meeting.
There is no conversation, no laughter, no cheerfulness, no sociality, except in spitting; and that is done in silent fellowship round the stove, when the meal is over.
The resolute din, the unresting motion of the great stones, giving her a dim, delicious awe as at the presence of an uncontrollable force; the meal forever pouring, pouring; the fine white powder softening all surfaces, and making the very spidernets look like a faery lace-work; the sweet, pure scent of the meal,--all helped to make Maggie feel that the mill was a little world apart from her outside every-day life.