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Happy-Gourmand

Dads deserve a tribute, too

This weekend we celebrate Father’s Day.

It seems only fair that we offer an appropriate tribute in line with that of the one for Moms. Although Dads are certainly an important part of our everyday life, their special day is much less of a fuss than the one that fêtes mothers.

Why is that, I wondered?

Mother’s Day brings advertising about taking Mom to the spa, or out for brunch. We need to show her that we appreciate all the work she does.

The National Restaurant Association in the U.S. says it is the most popular day for dining out of the entire year, which obviously says we think Mom should have a day off from cooking and doing the dishes.

Fair enough, but where does that leave Dad?

The advertising tells us to buy him tools, and research shows that 56% of Dads get ties, which seems to say they should go back to work.

Where the tradition of Mother’s Day by some accounts goes back to a Christian practice in the Renaissance era, Father’s Day does not seem to have any historical connection.

Does this mean that fathers are less important?

I think it goes back to the primitive concept of hunters and gatherers, when the men folk went out to get the meat for dinner and the women folk stayed home and took care of the home front.

The folks at home are very appreciative when their men return (especially with the prize) but the time they are gone is just considered a necessary evil. It is when they don’t come back that a tribute is paid.

In my usual vein of trying to appreciate that life is short and we need to make the most of it, I propose that we honour Dads now, while we have them, and not wait until later, when we wish we had done more sooner.

For all of us grown-up children, and especially for those who have children of their own, I suggest we try this weekend to pay tribute to the Dad or Grampa or special male role model we have by showing them what makes them special.

You could just give them a call if they live far away, or maybe send them a treat in the mail. If you can get together for a meal, then what could be a better tribute than that traditional man’s meal – a steak!

My chef hubby, Martin, gives his best tips below to do the cooking… or perhaps it’s just best to hand Dad a beer and let him do it himself?

You could stand by and be a “helper,” or just hang out and chat. How often is it that we take the time to simply enjoy someone’s company?

Remember, sometimes special moments come when you least expect them. A simple evening by the barbecue may become a cherished memory you hold for many years to come. You will not regret it.

Lastly, I’ll share a secret for those of you that don’t like all this mushy stuff – if you get caught up in the moment and have a little tear, you can always blame the smoke.

Chef Martin’s Steak Tips

The perfect steak!

Major heat for extra searing, that's the secret. Juicy inside and crispy outside is how you want the final product.

Whether you use your barbecue grill or your stovetop, you will need the maximum heat available and the hotter the better.

Put a touch of oil, salt and pepper on your meat right before you cook it. You can add other spices if you wish, but cooking it properly is the best key for a great-tasting steak.

Even your best barbecue can use more power when it comes to steaks. You can improve your searing by turning an old metal tray upside down on top of the grill for 10 minutes at maximum heat. Just take the tray off at the last minute, brush your grill and drop your steak on it.

When it comes to the stovetop, you need to have a thick-bottomed, high-quality pan (cast iron works well). Turn your burner to high, place your pan on top and wait until it is really hot.

Add a touch of vegetable oil and drop your steak in the pan, and make sure that your overhead fan is operating. Any kind of good healthy oil will burn eventually, so as soon as you put your steak in the pan it will start smoking.

The meat you buy will have a big impact on the possible results you can reach. Ever since the caveman cooked the first piece of beef, Tenderloin, T-Bone, Rib Eye and New York have been the best steaks to buy.

If these are out of your budget zone, I recommend cooking what you get to a maximum of medium for a tender steak.

Happy Father’s Day!



More Happy Gourmand articles

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About the Author

Kristin Peturson-Laprise is a customer experience specialist by trade, which means she is someone passionate about people having a good time. 

Her company, Wow Service Mentor, helps businesses enhance their customer experience through hands-on training, service programs, and special event coordination.

Kristin enjoys her own experiences too, and that is what she writes about in this column. She and her husband Martin Laprise (also known as Chef Martin, of The Chef Instead) love to share their passion for food and entertaining.  

Kristin says:

"Wikipedia lists a gourmand as a person who takes great pleasure in food. I have taken the concept of gourmandise, or enjoying something to the fullest, in all parts of my life. I love to grow and cook food, and I loved wine enough to become a Sommelier. I call a meal a success when I can convey that 'sense of place' from where the food has come . . . the French call that terroir, but I just call it the full experience. It might mean tasting the flavours of my own garden, or transporting everyone at the table to a faraway place, reminiscent of travels or dreams we have had."

 

E-mail Kristin at:  [email protected]

Check out her website here:  www.wowservicementor.com

 



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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