As I am writing this I can smell the fragrant goodness of mesquite and hickory wood mixed with country-style pork ribs and the heady meatiness of sirloin tip roast. My Masterbuilt electric smoker is billowing clouds of white smoke into the suburban grid and I’m annoying my neighbors with the aroma of freshly smoked meat. Today is a celebration of meat.
Meat. I love it. A luxurious and delicious benefit of the frontal lobe. Man is smarter than the other animals, therefore he will fashion a spear and kill what he needs and roast it on a fire. I am an unapologetic apex predator and when I’m in this mind-set there is no amount of tofu, fresh vegetables or nuts that will satiate my desire for the fatty, lusty and carnal desire of freshly smoked meat.
I don’t care what meat it is. Game, beef, poultry or lamb it doesn’t matter. I sometimes crave meat. I’m comfortable with my carnal desires and the sins of the smoked flesh.
It’s like some ancestral caveman jumps into the cockpit of my brain and takes control. I call him Gug. Gug is my friend and although his language skills aren’t very good, we have an understanding. Meat is good. Fire is your friend. Cook meat with wood.
Sure the smoker came from the Home Shopping Network. It’s a Christmas gift from my wife that I received many moons ago. My ancestor Gug approves of the ease of turning on the electric thermostat to the perfect cooking temperature although he doesn’t understand how it works.. Gug also enjoys drinking some ice-cold pineapple moonshine with me as I write this article. Life is good for us knuckle-dragging neanderthals.
Gug doesn’t understand the idea of foraging in a grocery store with a stainless steel cart. His small, undeveloped brain gets confused over such weird ideas. Gug evolved to hunt, gather eat and procreate.
Gug is a good friend. He links me with my past. Long before political correctness and childhood obesity and fat-free tofu there was Gug. There are times as a man when it is important to ignore my inner cave man. Gug can get me in trouble. Gug needs to stay home during weddings, cocktail parties and heated discussions with supporters of PETA. I’m not ashamed of my inner Neanderthal and love of meat. It’s just that you can’t wear a loin cloth all the time and be taken seriously.
I check the digital thermometer and see that the beef is a perfect medium rare. I rest the meat and slap Gug’s hand. Gug wants to eat now. He grunts and has a puzzled look on his face as I start grinding cilantro,parsley,lime juice, garlic and extra virgin olive oil in the blender to make a chimichurri sauce to compliment the beef.
The country ribs need a little more smoking so I open another mason jar of cold moonshine. This time it’s apple pie and Gug smiles a big toothless grin.We have time. There is no rush. I smile too and wait patiently as a slight breeze blows under my loin cloth. This is a wonderful, meat inspired, cave man Sunday.