1archaic A fancy but insubstantial cooked dish, especially one of foreign origin.‘Puddings, ‘kickshaws’, or ‘made dishes’, and salads of cooked, pickled, or raw vegetables, herbs, and flowers.’
- ‘Different tasty kickshaws baked in a puff pastry.’
- ‘Tonolo's put it in little choux buns, puff-pastry kickshaws, tiny tartlets, and God knows what else.’
- ‘Yet I had ordered duck pie, alamode beef and soused hog's face as well, apart from the kickshaws.’
- 1.1North American An elegant but insubstantial trinket.‘He pursues the miching-malicho lyric and the possibilities it offers, but always with an acute sense of how to true the comic impulse that vitalizes his sublime as well as kickshaw modes.’
- ‘But Musgrave, in his sturdy, common-sense way, only laughed at her seriousness over such kickshaws.’
Late 16th century from French quelque chose ‘something’. The French spelling was common in the 17th century; the present form results from interpretation of quelque chose as plural.