There is an expression in Japanese -- "Ryori-danshi" that refers to a man who likes to cook. More men are starting to brush up on their culinary skills as cooking becomes a popular pastime.
The website Sugoren recently conducted a survey of women, asking them what food cooked by men attracted them the most. Here are the nine most popular answers.
1. Homemade Pasta
"Anybody can boil pasta but it's impressive when a man can make pasta sauce." (woman around 20 years old)
Pasta with homemade pasta sauce is popular for women. Italian restaurant menus offer lots of tips on how different varieties of sauce can enhance a plate of pasta.
2. Fried rice
"It's attractive to see a guy holding a heavy wok, cooking fried rice." (teenage girl)
Apparently, cooking food that requires a bit of stamina leaves a good impression. It's even more manly if the guy is holding the wok or frypan over a strong fire.
3. Omelet with a filling of ketchup-seasoned fried rice
"I would love a man to make me a soft omelet with a filling of ketchup-seasoned fried rice like they serve in restaurants." (woman around 20 years old)
Making a good omelet with a filling of ketchup-seasoned fried rice is difficult, especially controlling the softness of the omelet, so it's impressive when men can nail it for women.
4. Curried rice or curry rice (if you prefer)
"It's easy to cook, but it feels like a man's specialty." (woman around 30 years old)
It's a common item on many menus, but women particularly like it if a man prepares curry rice not only at home but also at an outdoor camp, for example.
5. Hamburg steak
"Men who can cook foods which have many processes seem to be able to do even difficult things." (woman around 20 years old)
Ah, the good old "hamburg" steak. A guy will really score points with a woman with this one, especially if he starts from scratch by making the hamburger patty and then trying a few different recipes.
6. Niku-jaga (simmered meat and potatoes)
"Any guy who can make this cares about homey cooking." (woman around 20 years old)
One of Japan's traditional foods, niku-jaga (simmered meat and potatoes) has long been popular with women. There are many subtle touches that can be added to enhance the flavor, so if you want to impress your lady, create an original niku-jaga recipe.
7. Miso soup
"I'm really impressed when I see a guy make original 'dashi' (Japanese soup stock made from dried bonito and kelp) for miso soup." (woman around 30 years old)
Even something as simple as miso soup can win a woman -- as long as you make "dashi" and not rely on instant miso soup from the supermarket. Not many men know the base of miso soup, so it's a chance to learn something new.
8. Okonomiyaki (savoury pancake with various ingredients)
"It's really cool to see a man flip okonomiyaki easily." (teenage girl)
There is an art to flipping okonomiyaki and it is easy to make a mess if you do it wrong. A quick flip and the woman sitting opposite you will be in awe (either that or she'll have parts of okonomiyaki over her).
9. Sweets and Cake
"It's difficult to make a soft sponge cake, even for women, so if a guy can do it, wow." (teenage girl)
It's appealing to see men do precise things well. Desserts, especially cakes, are easy to get wrong. If you make a mistake with the amount of butter and sugar, or get the oven temperature wrong, the result will be very different. So be careful before you try a cake ... your chances of winning your woman's heart may depend on it.© Japan Today