Translation:At the time of your appointment, I was preparing something to eat.
"À l'heure de ton rendez-vous, je faisais à manger." Translation:At the time of your appointment, I was preparing something to eat.
I entered "At the time of your appointment, I was preparing to eat." (this was the drag-and-drop sentence) Why is there a "something" presumed in this phrasing?
It's not presumed so much as required because of what the idiomatic French phrase actually means.
"Faire à manger" is "[making/preparing] + [food/something] + [to eat]", i.e. "making something to eat", not "preparing to eat". The French drops the "food/something", but it's implied.
Here, the idiom rules. "À manger" is "something/stuff/food to eat" (or just "food"). "Donnez-nous à manger" is "give us something to eat" (or just "give us food").
The same is true of "à boire".
Take a look at some of these examples:
faire à manger means "to do the cooking". See the following links:
Does idiomatic usage trump clear meaning of the words? Sometimes, but it is very rare, the idiom would have to be a very strongly excluding one. It would have to exclude the simple interpretation.
So I ask, is "I was preparing to eat" also a vaild interpretation? Even though as others have show in this discussion, "was preparing something to eat" and "was cooking" are both idioms that are accepted. In this case does the idiom completely surpress the clear simple reading of the words. I doubt it, but I am not in Francophnoe-land.