Thursday, 5 November 2015

30 days in November 5...

Come on chaps, stiff upper lip and all that and if you can’t beat ‘em, well…

After all, today is:

Men Make dinner Day

Apparently this day (November 5th, Bonfire Night, Treason and Plot as it used to be called before The Investigatory Powers Bill) is dedicated to all men who can’t really cook but need to try, a day that comes with a whole list of dos and don’ts. Some of the rules include no interference (help) by the women in the kitchen, no TV (even football) during cooking, and definitely no beer until the meal is in the oven.

But are you a reluctant cooker or are you one of those men that cook for the ladies not, as many women do to get through to your heart via your stomach, but more as a way to gain entry into her more intimate affections?  One of the new generation of men who see cooking more as a hobby than a household chore and hone their kitchen prowess to impress friends and prospective partners?

In short: Are you a ‘Gastrosexual’?

Women love a man that can cook. Gone are the days where the man brought home the mammoth and the woman roasted it on the fire. These days the man catches the mammoth, fillets it, soaks it overnight in a marinade and then tosses it with lemongrass and wild mushrooms before adding crème fraiche and serving in warm bowls with a little pasta.

Yes, things are hotting up in the kitchen as men turn to cooking as a way to attract women. According to one study, 48 per cent of women say being able to cook makes a man more attractive to them, with 23 per cent of 18-34 year old men saying they cook only as an attempt to seduce a partner.

Now I thought that was what the wine was for. But the report also shows that 60 per cent of British men now regularly cook for friends and family, favouring complicated foreign dishes (curries and the like) over traditional British food with over half of those men preparing meals from separate ingredients (not ping-and-ding ready meals) every day, spending an average of 41 minutes whipping up some culinary delight daily.

Of course men have always made the Sunday gravy and no self-respecting male hands over the tongs of the barbecue to his missus. But the number of families where men help in the kitchen has risen from almost 0 per cent before the war (carving the joint excluded) to 27.5 per cent in the post war period to 66.5 per cent back in 2008. Now, in 2015, there's hardly a man alive who doesn't have his own egg separator and who can't whip up a pretty good five course meal in a jiffy.

Of course I blame all those celebrity chefs for this situation. These days the likes of Gordon Ramsey and Jamie Oliver have made making a bit of dinner into some sort of male tribal war ritual. All of them, from Gino D'Acampo to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Rick Stein, not only cook their food in buckets and piles of bricks in the rain outside, but often breed, forage for, and sometimes kill the animals and vegetables they are cooking themselves. And of course they do all this whilst wielding large knives in exotic far-flung corners of the world - like Italy.

Maybe it’s a Mafia thing - 'I'm gonna make you some offal you can't refuse'.

12 comments:

  1. Just doing my bit as I type. The tv is on though and I do it for no other reason than it is the right thing to do while your other half is still working... oh and I love it when a pan comes together.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good man Ian. I may pinch that.

      Delete
  2. Vicky Sutcliffe on fB
    Ted has always performed excellently in the kitchen!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andrew Height
      Understandably so. After all you are his wife and there's no room for slackers on the tight ship that you run wink emoticon

      Delete
  3. Lorna Gleadell on FB
    Garry put a frozen pizza in the oven tonight............does that count ??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    1. Andrew Height
      Errrr.. sadly not.

      I have made bonfire night loaded baked potatoes (loaded with corned beef, spring onions, cheese with a cheesy centre surprise) and baked my own haricot beans in a rich tomato sauce. Still won't get a shag though.

      Delete
    2. Lorna Gleadell
      Neither will Garry, so you might as well have done frozen pizza and used the time to start that Guy Fawkes script !!! ha ha ha

      Delete
  4. Cloe Fyne on FB
    Is it?! Great! I shall expect tea on the table when I return from netball then! smile emoticon

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andrew Height
      Well, Jamie might expect a little schmoozing if you do. Read the blog x

      Delete
  5. Paul Whitehouse on FB
    I never really set out to become proficient in the kitchen it came about as a result of having my first house (on my own) and wanting to eat more than just beans on toast. Gradually i became more and more adventurous trying out new dishes on unsuspecting friends. I followed in my parents' footsteps i suppose? ...right from an early age i can remember them hosting small dinner parties in true seventies style....sherries on arrival for the guests, parma ham and melon or prawn cocktail, probably some sort of casserole and maybe a pavlova or (cliche') black forest gateau. All followed by coffee (done in a percolator) with a Remy Martin or Tia Maria of course. The evening would be rounded off with a game of cards and probably a further snifter of Blue Nun or Watney's Red Barrel ( beer only for the men of course). How times have changed !!! Apart from the influx of foreign cuisine which my parents would have shunned, we now go all out to create a work of art on a (long) plate....with a jus, a spun sugar cage, a timbale, a tapenade or even a red wine reduction. What would my parents have made of all this or indeed my recent 'de-constructed' black forest gateau...height of indulgent cheffy ponciness i know! ??? I don't think they could have ever imagined or comprehended what dinner parties would look like one generation on, back in those beige days of extreme banality where cheese fondues were the epitome of style and adventure. Whilst i look back on those times with some degree of affection and nostalgia, i hated most of what the seventies produced. from the shit cars to the shit clothes. How glad i am now to have at my disposal the amazing recipes and ingredients that we all take for granted.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lorna Gleadell
      Well, that killed the conversation.........................

      Delete
    2. Andrew Height
      That was a great resume Paul of how you ended up with the biggest fuck off outside kitchen available. Still waiting to see you on 'come dine with me', but when you eventually cook it will be well worth the wait. You will be the one everyone things a bit camp and then surprise them with your machismo in the kitchen. I truly hope you get some absolutely obnoxious and awful guests so that you can make a meal pf them with your cutting wit.

      Delete