Be a Man: Learn to Cook
There was a time when telling a man to learn how to cook for himself would have been completely pointless. Either a man would be settled down and married to a good woman who could cook for him, or he would be single and have multiple food options available to him, or he would have a woman in his life with basic homemaking skills.
Sadly, that is not the world we live in today. Women have concentrated so hard on grrrl power and self-realisation that their basic skills in the home are poor or non-existent. Men are either stuck eating take-out from restaurants, or dealing with the latest in tofu-munching "wisdom" from their significant others. Take-out and fast food is horrible for you; the fats and oils that go into it are the cheapest available, of the soy- and corn- and vegetable-derived variety, which means that you run serious risk of ingesting large quantities of trans fats which (in technical terms) screw up all kinds of stuff in your body. And stuff like tofu, hummus, breads, pastas, and most processed bean and cereal products, are simply not things your body can digest or handle easily.
Moreover, the "conventional wisdom" these days forces us to eat complicated and difficult-to-prepare meals that require diverse ingredients and long cooking times in order to make "healthy" food that is in reality poisonous to our bodies and minds. The fact is that cooking a delicious meal for one or two people should not take more than 20-30 minutes of preparation time, and if you're using a pan or a skillet then it should take you no more than 10 minutes to actually cook everything you need.
If you are prepared to eat Paleo, if you work out by lifting heavy things two or three times a week, then you need to abandon the conventional wisdom about food and go back to simple yet delicious meals prepared quickly and easily using the freshest ingredients you can find. And there's good news here: it is in fact easier to cook this way than it ever was to cook any other way.
You really can have it all- huge amounts of tasty food that leave you feeling full and satisfied, that takes maybe 20-30 minutes at most to prepare, and that will cause your testosterone and energy levels to shoot up while giving you the nutrition that you need to be strong.
Tools You Need
Forget the TV shows that try to sell you entire racks of knives and sets of cookware. It's all BS. This is all you need:
- A large and very very sharp cleaver or butcher's knife. I've had mine for nearly 10 years and I sharpen it every week. It's my favourite knife by far.
- A small paring or cutting knife.
- A cutting board. Get a bamboo one if you can find it.
- A 10-inch non-stick skillet. If you want, supplement it with a 10-inch stainless steel skillet for high-heat cooking; Teflon doesn't stand up well against repeated high-heat, high-speed cooking.
- A large, solidly built non-stick wok. (Great for those stir-fry breakfasts that take like 5 minutes to make if you've already chopped everything up the night before.)
- A cast-iron grill. It should be so heavy that you'll be worried about breaking your wrist if you don't hold it properly.
- A grater and a garlic press.
- A crock pot for those meals that you just want to prepare and forget about. You can get a 4-5qt crock pot for like $30 these days. One of these will make the toughest piece of low-grade beef as tender as a ribeye steak after 4 hours of slow cooking. Once you make beef chili in a crock pot, you'll understand.
- A ready supply of high-quality proteins- beef, chicken, fish, eggs, pork (bacon!!!), and any other form of animal protein that you really enjoy. If you're a vegetarian- sucks to be you, really.
- Lots of leafy green vegetables- spinach, salad greens, kale, etc.
- Various other vegetables that you enjoy- broccoli, tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, carrots, stuff like that
- Spices- any spice mix at your local grocer will do, but ensure that you're paying for good quality spices that will last you a while. I go through spices quickly because I come from a culture that enjoys highly spiced and aromatic foods.
- Fruits- my fridge is stocked at all times with berries, dates, and often bananas. Fruit is my primary and often only source of sugar these days, so I might as well enjoy them.
- Cooking fats- probably the most important aspect of the Primal approach to life. Saturated fat is good for you, and don't ever forget that. Get yourself some extra virgin coconut oil, grass-fed butter, and extra-virgin olive oil. A man could live a long and happy life on just these three fats. I also keep a supply of nut oils for variety and flavour, as well as a jar of bacon grease (which makes everything cooked in it taste amazing).
- Bacon and eggs: take half a tomato, some mushrooms, a quarter of an onion, and an eighth of a bell pepper. Chop everything up. Whisk at least two eggs until smooth and blended. Dump veggies in a pan in at least a teaspoon of butter. Cook for 3-5 minutes, add eggs, scramble until golden brown. Make bacon in the microwave or on another skillet. Eat with cheese and coffee, followed by fruits in heavy cream.
- STEAK!: There are very few women out there who I've found can really cook a killer steak. And that's because steak is very simple to cook, but it requires timing and precision, not faffing about. Sear a hunk of ribeye for 2-2.5min per side (depending on thickness). Dump in an oven heated to at least 200 degrees Celsius and cook on each side for 4-6min. Keep cooking until blood rises to the surface. Remove, add salad greens and red wine to your table, and then proceed to tear it apart like an animal.
- Paleo stir fries- my idea of a really good breakfast these days involves seemingly half a produce aisle chopped up and dumped in a wok. Honestly, just chop up a bunch of onions, mushrooms, carrots, and broccoli, add spinach if you want. Get a few boneless chicken thighs, cube and dice. Cook the meat first in a very very hot wok in coconut oil, and lots of it. Remove the meat. Add the veggies. Stir around until the veggies just start to get soft. Add the meat back in. Add some spices and tamari (gluten-free soy sauce).