Make Your Best Dish For Dudes and Win a Copy of Mad Hungry

If you’re anything like me, then cooking for someone is definitely an act of giving. And now that we’ve officially reached “the season for giving,” I can think of nothing better to give someone special than some home-cooked food. This is a rich topic, and one that never fails to fascinate me. So I’m curious, what foods do you like to cook for someone else… and specifically, for those of the male species?

That is the focus of one of my favorite food idols, Lucinda Scala Quinn‘s latest book, Mad Hungry: Feeding Men and Boys. And I’m giving away ten copies of this hot-off-the-shelf hardcover to the first bloggers who post a recipe in honor of its theme. That’s right — just write a blog post with a recipe that you think is dude-worthy and explain why, and post it by December 15, 2009. Be sure to write to me as soon as you do (cathy[at], and the first ten of you will receive a copy just in time for holiday-giving. Also, please mention in your post, somewhere, that you’re doing this for the Mad Hungry book giveaway on Not Eating Out in New York. (We like to spread the word around.) I can’t wait to see what you make, and I’m sure Lucinda will love to see the recipes, too. Can you be a guy, and still enter this contest by blogging? Absolutely! Make something that you think your gender would like the most — hey, you should know the best.

As the only XX chromosome among an immediate family of three sons and a husband, Lucinda has cooked for men and boys, a lot. That guys eat differently than chicks is not something to send chills down us liberated womens’ spines, in her opinion — it’s a fact of life. They’re mad hungry. Lucinda also knows that food isn’t meant to be simply stuffed down the throat, either; it should nourish, entertain and enrich a person’s day and overall experience. But when someone is running out the door and needs to be stuffed, and quickly, she has a lifetime of experience’s worth of tips on how to do that efficiently, while making a meal still memorable. We’ve all heard the old adage, “the secret ingredient is love,” but if you’re in need of some ideas for actual, tangible dishes to fold your love into, then there are some really good ones in this book.

Incidentally, today I got to sit down with two guys and chat about what they would cook for chicks if they had to create the perfect “date meal.” This is a favorite question of mine for all guests on Cheap Date, my Heritage Radio Network podcast show. It was put to two members of the folksy, bluesy Brooklyn band, The Dirty Urchins. Bennet (upright bass, backup vocals) freestyled an incredible-sounding five-course menu starting with a cheese plate, a lentil salad, seared fish, and some sort of quinoa side tossed in there, followed by a chocolately dessert. (WOW!) David (guitar, tenor sax, vocals) suggested something really messy, like ribs which you have to “get all in there with your hands.” (HOT.) Amazingly, these guys both said that they would prefer to cook the date meal themselves rather than take their ladies to a restaurant. (You see, Brooklyn is really becoming my kind of town.)

So now that I’m tickled by these culinary suggestions pleasing to the female species, let’s take a look at some ideas for the guys! Remember to email me when you blog your Mad Hungry giveaway entry, and the deadline to post is December 15th. Come on, make your men proud (or just stuffed). And just for fun, here’s one recipe from my archives that I think might be a good fit for feeding men and boys, especially at this time of the year. It’s a recipe for the French country casserole, cassoulet, which I made with beans, ham hocks and apples to add a little sweetness to all that salt. I actually made a similar cassoulet recently for a room full of guys (and one girl), and it was heartily received. Now blog away!

14 Responses

  1. sanne

    I cook for one boy, 3,5 years old, but I’m on it:) what’s a dutch oven?? I’m dutch myself but haven’t got a clue…

  2. Stacy

    I cook for my boyfriend and my dad. My dad loves the fresh pastas & sauces I make. My boyfriend loves the chili I make as well as other spicy fare. Both of them LOVE any pie, cake or cookies I make! 🙂

  3. Morta Di Fame

    I wrote this blog post all about someone who all I want to do is give food to, but he always says NO! So I designed a “can’t say not country dinner tasting menu” just for him when we were away, and he couldn’t say no because he was my captive eater! he ate them all and loved them and the rest is between him and I…

    The following dishes were served:

    “You sure you don’t have thyme for a drink cocktail”
    “Do or die sunchoke bruschetta”
    “Yes dear or get beet soup”
    “How can you say gnocchi?”
    “I think I can sticky toffee pudding cake”

  4. Anne

    During the cold days of late fall/early winter I like to break out the crock pot and do a mean Vietnamese beef stew called Bo Kho (literally stewed beef) with the robust flavor of star anise and the rich taste of beef and carrots poured into a loafy baguette. There’s nothing more he wants.

  5. Jess

    The first night my boyfriend and I had together after we signed a lease for an apartment, I made him a glorified version of franks & beans: chorizo, Heinz vegetarian beans, plenty of cumin and hot pepper, cold beer, and buttermilk biscuits. I figured the combination of the excessive money we’d signed off on spending, and the fear he’d have to eat “girl food” forever, was quashed forever.

  6. Suzy

    My husband grew up with bland food and thought he was an “eat to live” type of person. Then we got together and I started cooking for him. Now he loves eating, but still remains super skinny. I’m not exactly sure how that works. When it is cold out, his favorite thing for me to make is a big pot of vegetarian chili and corn bread. My veggie chili is pinto, black bean and garbanzo beans cooked in the crock pot with garlic, onion, corn, lots of spices and diced tomatoes. I don’t measure it very often. Then fake meat is thrown in before we eat it. A bowl of chili has cheese on top and a piece of cornbread wedged in somewhere. And there are always leftovers.

  7. Joanne

    I’m outnumbered by the males in this house also. I feed my boy who wrestles a lot! Right now his favorites are the perennial spaghetti bolangese, red beans and rice, and pork chops. We have a favorite sweet and spicy bbq ribs he adores, and every other month he requests quiche with spinach, onions and bacon. Yes he wants his meat. I’ve even learned to prep ground beef and keep cans of refried beans, shredded cheese, and tortillas so he can make what he calls his “Man-ritos”

  8. cptexas

    The hubby loves, loves potato tacos fried crispy with cabbage slaw and fresh tomato salsa. He always asks me to make him thirty but I stop at nine or twelve.

  9. Deborah Dowd

    My husband and son (and just about every male who has tried it)loves Frickin’ Chicken, a recipe for a boneless buffalo chicken dish- all the yum of buffalo wings without the bones and totally habit-forming!

  10. Nancyjpt

    At our house, pot roast is the family meal of choice for my three boys. I follow a made up recipe that is part Marcella Hazan, part my mom, part a friend and part me:

    Brown a 2-4# Roast beef in olive oil in a large enamel Le Creuset Pot and throw in a bay leaf.Add a chopped spanish or vidalia onion and brown that too.Add potatoes which must be cut into smaller pieces unless they are small already. Add a can of peeled tomatoes or use fresh ones if they are in season, add a small can of tomato paste,and take a cup or two or three of red wine and pour it in. Sometimes I add beef stock and water in addition or instead of the wine. Throw in some pepper and some carrots-again either snall ones or ones cut to be small. It never hurts to add some fresh herbs or vegetables of any kind that you have.

    Cover and cook at 350 for at least an hour and perhaps two hours depending upon how large your roast is. Check to make sure there is plenty of liquid while it is cooking.

    I never met a man who did not like this meal.
    Those on a vegetarian diet who are not strict may simply just eat the vegetables and broth.

  11. Nancyjpt

    I forgot to say that it is important to make sure that there is plenty of liquid in the pot so add water or stock to top it up as needed before putting it into the oven. May also be cooked on the stovetop at a simmer.

  12. Anna

    I cook for my husband – he loves eating everything spicy (especially meats and sea food). I also bake my bread – huge loaves and flat breads. He also likes moist chocolate cakes (but I`m not good at that).

  13. Miss. B

    I just found your blog through a friend of mine. Great topic! Too bad I missed the deadline… Love your site!

  14. I absolutely love your site.. Great colors & theme.
    Did you create this site yourself? Please reply back as I’m wanting to create my own site and would like to find out
    where you got this from or exactly what the theme is called.
    Thank you!

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