Get Laid (Or At Least Get Her Attention)

So you wanna get laid, guys? Here’s a Pro Tip:  Forget flowers. Forget wine. Forget expensive dinners at the Top of the Mark.

If you want to turn her head, capture her heart, or show her how much you love her:  Learn to Cook. (And it may just get you laid, too!)

Although  made-from-scratch Chocolate Cake is a sure winner, and warm Grand Marnier Soufflé is divine, there’s a lot of stress involved in getting a finicky dessert to rise for the occasion, so let’s start with something a bit more forgiving:

Homemade Bread

A little too much flour? Water a tad cool? No worries! With homemade bread, it’s always easy to get it up as long as you use fresh yeast. (And for those who like to whip it up and keep it up, I’ll get to the chocolate soufflé recipe in a future post.)

Most women find men’s hands sexy, and this recipe will show off not only your talented fingers, but also the muscles in your arms and your competence in the kitchen — and there’s nothing like the smell of  baking bread to make her mouth water and her curiosity soar: I wonder what it would be like to have those gorgeous hands caressing me?  Why bread you may ask?  Because making bread demonstrates your ability to plan,  organize, follow directions, work hard, wait for something you want, and share your time and talents.  (A little upper-body workout wouldn’t hurt, but it’s not required.)

There are endless possibilities, but I’m going to suggest a fool-proof recipe for Swedish Rye Bread.  If it comes out a tad dense or a bit light, it will still smell and taste wonderful.  You can serve it with a meal, you can eat it with whipped honey for dessert, or you can freeze it and toast it with butter for breakfast.  (Be sure to make two loaves: one to eat, and one to send home with her.  That way she can brag to her friends about “this guy I just met with the most amazing hands…”)

How to Get LaidIf you want to have her over for dinner and serve the bread with the meal, that’s a smashing idea.  But, if you’re not quite up for all that cooking and making bread, just invite her over for an afternoon of tea and Scrabble (or send the kids roller skating with a babysitter).

Here’s the game plan:  (You can view a concise version of the recipe here.)

Swedish Rye Bread

To start, you’ll need to have a large bowl (4-6 quarts), two loaf pans (I prefer glass or ceramic), and an apron.  The apron is very important: it states in no uncertain terms that the wearer knows his way around a kitchen.  Chefs wear aprons.  (They also wear goofy hats, but don’t get carried away.)  A bread knife is helpful, but not required (a serrated knife will work — even a serrated steak knife.)  Start making the dough 30-40 minutes before she arrives, and let it “rest” in the bowl until you hear the doorbell.  She’ll enjoy watching you knead the dough (while you chat with her about something she likes), so don’t jump ahead.

Put on your chef’s apron and gather your ingredients.  In a small bowl (such as a cereal bowl), mix 3/8 cup of lukewarm water, 1 tablespoon (or 1 packet) of active dry yeast, and 1/2 cup of white flour.  Briefly stir the mixture and then let it stand while you do the following:

In your large mixing bowl put:
2 cups of flour,
1/4 cup of packed brown sugar,
1/4 cup of molasses,
1/2 teaspoon salt,  (add this even if you don’t usually add salt to food.  It’s chemistry.)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil and
1 cup of dark rye flour (you can buy it in the baking section of most grocery stores).

How to Get LaidPour 1/2 cup of HOT water over the mixture and blend well.  Add the yeast mixture from above and mix.  Stir in approximately 2 cups of flour, 1/4 cup at a time (you may need to use your hands to get it properly mixed toward the end), and then wash your hands and wait for the doorbell.

Once you’ve gotten your guest something to drink, apologize for delaying the start of your Scrabble game by explaining that you need about 10 minutes to finish making bread dough, and then offer her a ring-side seat on the counter next to where you’re working.  (If she doesn’t say something to the effect of “Wow!  You know how make bread!?”  or “Will you marry me?” send me an email and I’ll send you a sympathy card.

Gorgeous Hands

Here’s where it gets good:  Dust your hands with flour and sprinkle a little flour on the dough and on the counter next to the bowl.  Lift the dough out of the bowl and set it down in the flour.  (You may need to keep adding small amounts of flour as you work the dough to keep it from sticking to your hands and the counter, so keep the flour container handy.)  Ask Ms. First Date what she likes to cook, and then begin kneading the dough by:
1) Placing one hand on top of the other and pressing the heel of your hands into the middle of the dough.
2) Folding the dough in half
3) Turning the dough 90 degrees (a quarter turn)
4) Asking your date another question.  (You are allowed to answer any questions she may ask, but you must immediately follow your answer with another question for her.  If this sounds difficult, make a list of potential questions and practice asking them while throwing a baseball with your best friend.)
5) Repeating the above steps for 10-15 minutes.

How to Get LaidLet Her Help

If she asks to help, by all means, say yes!  Have her wash her hands and then stand in front of the dough.  Stand behind her and put your arms around her waist.  Take her hands in yours and show her how to press, fold, and turn the dough.  Do NOT get frisky.  You’re serious about your bread making, and even though you would love to have your way with her, you’re going to let her lead.  Ahem.  Of course, if at this point, she whirls around and throws her arms around your neck, to hell with the bread, you can always make more.

After 15 minutes of kneading, leave the dough on the counter, wash and dry the large bowl, and then pour a teaspoon of vegetable oil in the bottom.  Use a paper towel to spread the oil ALL around the bowl, and then use it to “grease” the insides of two loaf pans.  Place the dough in the bowl and turn it around until it’s coated with a thin layer of oil.  Cover the bowl with a warm, damp cloth (a clean dish towel works nicely) and let the dough sit for 2 hours in a warm place.
 Scrabble, Anyone?

Clean up and go play Scrabble (BTW, “qwerty” is a legal word, and it’s worth 66 points if you put it on a triple word score box by hooking up with an ‘s’ for “qwertys.”)
Once the two hours are up (or the dough is double in bulk), wash your hands, and then take the dough out of the bowl and knead it for a minute or two (until all the air bubbles are out.)  Divide it into halves and form each half into a ball and then a loaf.  Place each loaf into a greased loaf pan (prepared above) and let the dough rise for another hour.  Preheat the oven to 300 F. and when it’s hot, put the bread in and set the timer for 55 minutes.

After about 20 minutes, it’s going to start smelling really good at your place, so even if she’s beating you at Scrabble, and you’ve run out of questions to ask her, have no fear; things are as they should be — unless she informs you that she can’t stay any longer and will call you sometime, in which case you’re screwed (in a bad way).  (Did you use “rapist” or “psychopath” during Scrabble?  Did you tell her all about your old girlfriend and how you drove her crazy with your baseball card obsession?  Did you get frisky when you helped her with the dough and accidentally dumped molasses all over her silk blouse?  If the answer to all of those questions is no, then she probably wasn’t The One, and maybe that’s for the best.  In any case, you could always open the door a crack and wait for someone else to stop by to find out what that wonderful smell is.)

How to Get LaidHeaven Awaits

When the oven timer dings, open the door and thump the top of the bread with the back of your fingers.  If the loaf sounds hollow, it’s done.  If not, set the timer for five minutes and repeat the test.  Once the bread is baked, take it out of the oven and let it cool for a couple of minutes.  Try not to drool as you get out a bread knife, plates, & butter or honey.  Dump the loaves out of their pans (on their sides!) onto a cutting board and let them cool for a couple more minutes.  Refill your drinks, and then carefully cut a couple slices of hot (!) bread (Cook books always tell you to let the bread cool completely before cutting it, but those people seem to live in a fantasy world with infinite time and no bread thieves, so I suggest you ignore their advice).

And Then Get Laid

Try the sweet, golden bread with a glass of red wine in front of a fire on a cold winter’s night, and be sure to offer a hands-on demonstration of those muscles you’ve been developing — she’ll love to be the recipient of your bread-kneading expertise.  (And on the off chance there’s any bread left over, slice it, seal it in a plastic bag, and put it in the freezer. It’s great for breakfast: just pop it in the toaster while it’s still frozen, and when it’s hot, spread a bit of butter or honey on top and enjoy!)

How’d It Go?

If you get a chance to try the recipe, post a comment here (or better yet, post a pic and send me a link!) to let me know how your bread turned out.  And be sure to let me know how your date worked out, as well.  Remember: the journey is the reward, and if you don’t get laid, at least you have something besides pop-tarts to eat for breakfast.

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