‘Manly Food’ by Simon Cave- Review



Being an unmanly Female means that using this book makes me feel like a fraud. The themes are ‘blokey’, ‘hearty’ and ‘flavour first’. Clearly as a Female I prefer my food to be somewhat less flavoured and preferably pink. And not rare meat pink either. 

Designed to appeal to the Man who becomes truculent if not given free rein with the barbecue and the knife steel, the book is divided into sections – ‘Pure Meat’; ‘Wild & Foraged’; ‘Chilli & Spice’, all accompanied by clear instructions and photographs. Should you lack those manly skills of Butchery it even teaches you how to prep carcasses and cure bacon. Should you be ashamed of having a sweet tooth then fear not- the desserts in here fall into the ‘Manly Desserts’. No worries about being mistaken for a girl here,  mate.

Recipes are actually very good and appeal to the Wo (man) in me which is rather worrying me that I am in fact turning into a man. ‘Hearty’ beef rib roasts (man food), curries that swipe chili heat viciously across the tongue (man food), Griled Corn, Chile & lime (man food)- all particular favourites and clearly meals that will put feathers upon the chest of any woman. 

Paella with Rabbit looks interesting and something that worked out well when we followed the recipe, having a delicacy that belied the subtext of the book. I am assuming this is ‘manly food’ because Real Men eat rabbits whilst real Women merely want to cuddle with them. Same with Gravlax. Is this a Manly recipe because of the use of heavy weights to press down on the curing fish? Maybe.

Eggs Benendict I assume is in here for when Caveman drags a fresh Cavewoman back to his cave and still feels the need to impress her the morning after. The Sorrel soup was epic. I love Sorrel with all its lemony ferrous glory. This was worth the price of the book alone and would impress me enough to stay the night in that cave if served the night before. 

We hope this book is tongue in cheek. If not, it’ll look lovely cuddled up to my pink cupcake books. They’ll have a long, happy and traditional marriage for sure.

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