Since borgo beat me to the punch by a matter of minutes, I had to rethink my response to IWho's tragically incomplete (though yummy!) writeup. Therefore, I give you:
A Man Salad
I may possess two X chromosomes, but I'm married to someone who's very definitely XY. This individual has rather strong feelings about what makes good man food, and it's an ongoing battle for me to get something green into him and thus stave off his tragic death. However, to keep him happy and decrease his tendency to sneak off and eat stuff that's terrible for him, once in a while I throw up my hands in defeat and descend into the darkling world of Man Food.
While this recipe is guaranteed to make any cardiologist cross themselves and shudder, I daresay it's still far healthier than the typical fast food takeout. So, kind readers, please consider this recipe in the light of an informed interpretation, rather than one which sprang directly from the allegorical XY hindbrain.
Any good Man Salad should be all about meat, but among the glaring omissions in the other versions already given, you must never forget the bread and the cheese, so in a sense this is a bread salad, too. Normally I'd probably add in things such as onions and roasted red bell peppers, but there are no vegetables (aside from a touch of garlic) in this dish.
Ingredients and method
1. Set on some good music and fix yourself your favorite cocktail.
2. Before you get started, set aside a good book, a rare cigar, and some Bailey's (or perhaps a vintage port), for later. You might as well open up the bottle now to allow it to breathe, as long as you're standing there mixing up that cocktail.
3. Collect and prepare ingredients:
- Cut some prime filet of beef into large chunks, about 2 inches (5cm) on a side. Marinate overnight in Worcestershire sauce. Drain well, pat dry, and sear (or broil) over extremely high heat until beautifully browned. Remove from heat onto a place, cover with foil and keep warm...it's important to let the meat rest. Save all drippings.
- Fry up some thick-sliced rashers of bacon, then crumble into large chunks. Save all drippings.
- Fry or grill some sausages - bratwurst, kielbasa, chorizo; it's all good. Again, save all drippings. Cut the sausages into large chunks.
- Cut fresh sourdough bread into similarly large chunks, but keep them no more than about 1/2 inch (1.3 cm) thick. Toast them very lightly in a low oven until there's just the faintest color on them, then pull them out. Rub them lightly with a cut clove of garlic, then spread them on a large cookie sheet. Top these with your favorite melting cheese. Mozzarella does just fine, of course, but you might want to try fontina, Jarlsberg, Kerry Gold, or (for the brave) a Maytag blue cheese or a bold horseradish cheddar. Whatever you decide, just put some cheese on, as a Man Salad should never be without cheese! Put it all under your broiler until the cheese has just started to melt and bubble. Remove and let cool. (If you don't want to go to such trouble, you could always just cube up the cheese and use it that way, then use untoasted, thinly sliced bread as an eating utensil. Up to you.)
4. Put everything into a very large bowl. Be sure to include the drippings from the cooked meats, as they will be taken up by the toasted cheese crisps and add plenty of flavor to the party.
5. At this point, you can add some sauce if you like, though many feel that those lovely meat juices are all that is necessary. If you wish to gild the lily, though, you might add one of the following: vinaigrette, marinara sauce, or your favorite barbecue sauce. The carryover heat from the meat should serve to warm up the sauce.
6. Sprinkle your salad liberally with toppings (listed below).
7. Time to eat! Underwear is optional, of course. Dive in and enjoy! I heartily endorse borgo's suggestion of watching Married with Children if you are not otherwise occupied, but Full Metal Jacket may also suffice. And don't forget the port!
Select from the list below to suit your palate. Please don't forget to peel your choices gently, wash them, and pat dry, before topping your salad.
Robert Downey, Jr.
Jan Michael Vincent, from the early days of Airwolf
Ben Browder, playing Crichton on Farscape
Brian Molko, lead singer for Placebo
Lou Diamond Phillips
Captain Tight Pants from Firefly
Geraint Wyn Davies
Sean Pollock, the South African cricketer
Jesse L. Martin
Colin Firth, as Mr. Darcy
This writeup could not have been produced without numerous contributions from those on E2 who appreciate men. Thanks!