The Neanderthal Post

Survival of the Blog

Take Back the Kitchen: 3 Great Meals to Impress a Date

by Brett & Kate McKay

Ever since man created fire, we have been searching for new and better ways to prepare food. With regards to culinary evolution, our society has come quite a long way since the early days of roasting raw meat over open flames. Yet somewhere along the way, men lost their place and confidence in the kitchen.

Blame it on progress, or blame it on convenience, the fact remains; most men cannot cook. Sure, we might stand guard over the grill on Labor Day weekend or have a few ‘signature dishes’ up our sleeves, but collectively, our overall culinary knowledge and skills are limited. Even with the advent of ‘food television’ and popular shows like Top Chef, our interest in food is more focused around entertainment rather than on expertise. To be brutally honest, most of us were raised by a generation where cooking was not a central activity in our household, and if it was, it wasn’t done by the man of the house. Beginning in the late 1950’s through today, modern conveniences drastically reduced the need to possess culinary skills. The long lost sound of the dinner bell has been replaced by the sound of kids slamming car doors to meet Daddy at the neighborhood chain restaurant.

In my experience, there is still one element that can get men back into the kitchen: women. Put simply, women love a man who can cook. There might be a few women that don’t like the idea of a man cooking for them, but I’ve yet to meet them. If you are looking to impress a date, avoid over-priced restaurants and stand out amongst the crowd . . . have her over for dinner.

Before you start taking reservations at your dining room table, I must confess: I am not, nor do I pretend to be a chef. Over the years I’ve listened to the needs and wants of regular guys when it comes to food. The underlying sentiment is always the same. “Give me clear, easy recipes that feature ingredients that I can buy anywhere.” My culinary approach is based on using simple preparation to turn quality ingredients into outstanding meals.

One of the greatest traits of the male persona is our affinity for taking things to the extreme. Whether it’s our career goals, a workout plan, or that fully restored ‘69’ Chevelle that’s sitting in the garage, we always shoot for the max. This trait however can cause trouble in the kitchen. We tend to live by the “more is better” approach to cooking. If we’ve ever heard or seen an ingredient used in a particular dish, you can bet the house we will find a way to incorporate it in some form or another. I’m not here to criticize, but a salmon fillet doused in soy, mustard, lime, chipotle, garlic, and oil just seems like overkill, if not a bad combination. Instead of investing countless dollars into marinades and seasonings, stick to fresh, quality ingredients. After all, great ingredients speak for themselves.

With that concept in mind, I’m here to encourage you to embrace your roots and get back into the fire (kitchen). You don’t need expensive equipment or a grocery list of ingredients to create exceptional meals. The kitchen should be a place where you can demonstrate your sense of confidence, precision, and preparation to that lovely lady.

I’ve laid out three meals that put the control in your hands. You decide what works best based on your schedule. In the past, I’ve found that most guys struggle when trying to put together an entire meal. In light of that struggle, I’ve offered up an array of ideas for appetizers, salads, and desserts to go along nicely with each entrée. I’ve also given you a few thoughts on pairing a particular wine or beer with the meal. Just remember; keep things simple, relax, and let the compliments (and her admiration) start rolling in.

View the recipes…

December 21, 2009 Posted by | Dating/Sex, Love | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment