Boys of Summer Fire Up the Grill

Boys of Summer Fire Up the Grill for Burgers

You know it’s summer when you’re driving with the windows down on a hot sunny day and you hear the lyrics “You got that top pulled down and that radio on, baby.” Don Henley might have set the mood for the season with his song “The Boys of Summer” but even after all these years there is nothing better than guys with TASTOSTERONE showing off their grilling skills.

Although my goal is to get guys to sharpen their culinary skills by cooking in the kitchen, no one can resist being outdoors barbecuing on a hot summer night. So for now, I want to see my T-Men take what they know outside and get the grill fired up! Grill master Chef Bobby Flay has the right idea.

There are many foods a guy can cook up on the grill; however, I have to admit my favorite is the classic burger. Whether it’s made with beef, chicken, turkey, or salmon, nothing beats burgers on the grill. The great thing about grilling burgers is that it gives you a chance to really be creative with your choice of meat, seasoning, toppings and sides.

The origin of the hamburger isn’t clear, but it’s believed that the version that first appeared in United States in the 1800s, known as the Hamburg steak, was introduced by sailors who visited the ports of Hamburg, Germany. It was served as a meat patty that was quickly cooked on the grill and placed between two pieces of bread. The hamburger has evolved much over time, ultimately winning the title of BBQ favorite. Not only do we see the hamburger at most summer BBQs, we also see it featured on menus at restaurants across the nation from fast food chains to five-star restaurants.

Whenever I’m craving a classic burger, I go straight to my mother’s recipe. You can never go wrong with these burgers. Serve them straight on a bun or add tons of your favorite toppings. The sky’s the limit with Grandma Barbara’s Burgers! Enjoy the summer boys!

Thank you to the boys of summer at Lawrenceville School for submitting their photo at the grill!

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Confidence and Competition Among Men Who Cook: The Cook-off

The Cook-off: Confidence and Competition Among Men Who Cook

We all know a man thrives off a little competition! Whether it’s a game of football, seeing who can eat the most hotdogs or who can get the girl, men just love to compete. I think the perfect competition is one combining food and ego, where the men bring tastosterone to the table. What could be better than confident men in the kitchen, taking pride in whipping up their signature dish? This is why cook-offs have recently become so popular.

Some cook-offs are informal, where people are mainly just interested in getting together to share recipes and enjoy good food, while taking part in a little friendly competition.  Other cook-offs are large-scale events with a panel of judges and prizes for winners. One of the most well-known cook-offs is Throwdown! with Bobby Flay, a Food Network TV show in which Chef Bobby Flay challenges cooks renowned for a specific dish or type of cooking to a cook-off of their signature dish.

Bobby Flay is known far and wide as one of the best chefs in the industry, so to get the chance to compete against him in a cook-off is truly an honor. As a resident of Monmouth County, NJ, I was thrilled to hear that Bobby Flay will be competing against Chef Drew Araneo of Drew’s Bayshore Bistro in Keyport as part of New Jersey’s Stronger Than The Storm Campaign. The VooDoo Shrimp Throwdown is free to the public and will take on Thursday, June 27 at 2 p.m. on the Keyport Waterfront. Chef Drew’s VooDoo Shrimp is a Jersey Shore favorite, so this competition is sure to get heated!

I got a chance to speak with Chef Drew about his feelings on cooking with Bobby Flay. He said, “I feel great about it. I’m a little nervous but mostly excited because this is not something you get to do every day. I’ve never met Bobby Flay before, but I heard he’s a great guy so I’m really looking forward to meeting him and doing the cook-off.” I also ask him if he altered his VooDoo Shrimp recipe at all for the competition and he said, “Nah, there’s no reason to change the recipe. It’s great the way it is.” I asked him what his secret ingredient is, but he wouldn’t tell me. He simply laughed and asked me if I was a spy for Bobby Flay. No worries Drew, I’m rooting for you!

Best of luck to both Chef Drew and Chef Bobby Flay! I’m looking forward to seeing what these T-Men bring to the table.

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Kitchen Tools and Gadgets for the Tastosterone Dad This Father’s Day

Tastosterone Father's Day Gift Ideas: Kitchen Tools and Gadgets

Brainstorming on what to get dad this year for Father’s Day? Well, we all know that guys love their toys! From cars and motors to remote control helicopters, guys seem to be attracted to anything that moves, has speed and creates action. So, how about we help them bring some action and speed into the kitchen? Get them cooking up their favorite meals with gadgets that enhance the cooking experience this Father’s Day.

Here are a few manly kitchen tools:

Post-Inset-Blow-TorchBlow Torch

There really is no significant difference between a kitchen blowtorch and one you’d find in the hardware store. Just make sure that the flame doesn’t fluctuate when you tilt the torch. Also, I recommend getting one that uses propane gas. Before you buy, double check your guy’s toolbox; he might already have one that he can bring to the kitchen! Blow torches are commonly used for making the sugar crust on crème brulée, charring peppers, tightening the skin on fish, and simulating grill marks.

Bluetooth® Meat Thermometer

The iGrill®, an app-enabled wireless Bluetooth® meat thermometer, is a great gadget for those tech-savvy guys. It has dual temperature probe capability so you can monitor two different meats at once and also works as a stand-alone thermometer. It is iPad®, iPhone® and iPod Touch® compatible. It’s also compatible with most Android devices.

Beer Can Chicken Rack

This gadget is great for a Father’s Day gift. He’ll have the most flavorful, tender chicken and it’s very simple to use. Just place an open can of beer into the holder, slide a chicken over the can and place it on the grill. The base will keep the chicken stable and balanced while it grills. Make sure you only use a half can of beer. I am sure you’ll make use of the rest!

Post-Inset-HambrgersHamburger Press

Your guy is guaranteed to make the perfect burger with a hamburger press. With this tool, he can make the perfect meat patty and stuff it with his favorite fillings, such as cheese, bacon, or chili peppers. I recommend the Williams- Sonoma Stuffed Hamburger Press with Lifter for a Father’s Day gift.

Knife Sharpener

As your guy prepares for battle in the kitchen, he’ll need to make sure his knives are sharp. But be careful not to over use the knife sharpener, as it can dull the knives. I recommend the Chef’s Choice Electric Knife Sharpener.

Wine Aerator

This is for all the wine lovers. A wine aerator expands the surface area of wine, allowing it to breathe, significantly improving the experience of the wine. The Vinturi Wine Aerator is a great product.

Smoker

This is perfect for grilling season. Smokers cook food slowly over low heat to lock in flavor. From wood smokers to electric smokers, there are a variety of quality smokers on the market.

You might want to consider these Father’s Day gifts, too. They’re a little on the silly side, but if he’s got a good sense of humor I guarantee he’ll love them!

Kikkerland Tiki Pepper Grinder
FRED Salt & Power Battery (Salt & Pepper Shaker)
Star Wars R2D2 Nutcracker

Although I believe less is more with regard to kitchen cleanup and gadgets, if a cool gadget gets a guy cooking in the kitchen, I say go for it!

Don’t forget to also purchase TASTOSTERONE: THE BEST COOKBOOK FOR MEN, a hard copy or the Kindle version, for dad this Father’s Day. It’s another tool he’ll find useful in the kitchen. We appreciate all the dad advice and feedback that has made it such a successful book.

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