Posted: Monday 28th January 2013 at 13:59 pm

Aphrodisiacs – A menu for love

Aphrodisiacs – A menu for love

Aphrodisiacs should be on the menu whenever you are planning romantic dinners for two. While no one knows for sure if ingredients that are known as aphrodisiacs truly spark passion, they usually make for decadent and delicious meals, so what’s the difference? If you enjoy the food, you might be obliged to make a different kind of fire in the kitchen if you know what I mean. So, here are some recipes featuring aphrodisiacs that you might want to consider the next time you are cooking for your spouse:

1. Oysters

Oysters, which are shellfish, are probably the most well-known aphrodisiac. They get their reputation thanks to their salty yet sweet smell, which is supposedly similar to female pheromones and zinc, which helps boost testosterone. Whatever the reason, oysters are now synonymous with a romantic dinner.

Suggested Recipe – Oysters Rockefeller, a simple yet spicy dish, which will have you craving more. This recipe from the Southern Food Guide comes with a touching story about mom’s last meal out before passing away.

2. Strawberries

There’s something about strawberries that makes them seem like a passion fruit. Maybe it’s their shape or the stems that make them easy to feed to another person. Maybe it’s the shape one’s mouth makes as he or she eats it. Regardless, strawberries are way sexy.

Suggested Recipe – Strawberry Shortcake, a flavorful combination of whipped cream, strawberries, and either cake or biscuits. For a low-carb version of this delicious dessert, see this recipe from the Low Carb Diets Guide.

3. Nuts

Numerous nuts, including walnuts, pine nuts, and pistachio, fall under the aphrodisiacs umbrella. The heart-healthy snack is a good fat, and should be a staple of a healthy diet. A healthy people tend to be better at everything, including sex and virility. That might be why it maintains its spot among aphrodisiacs. Tossing walnuts in a salad, making pesto with pine nuts, or indulging in pistachio ice cream are all ways to get these nuts onto your menu.

Suggested Recipe – Brie in Puff Pastry with Vegetables and Ale, which features walnuts and alcohol, another aphrodisiac. Courtesy of the Home Cooking Guide, this recipe is particularly fancy considering its main ingredient is brie.

4. Coffee

Good coffee is rich and creamy and carries an aroma that draws people in. That’s probably why it is among the world’s aphrodisiacs. The caffeine might also give you a bit of a jump, which could benefit your lovemaking skills. Just don’t overdo it or you could come off more crazy than crazy in love.

Suggested Recipe – Caramel Coffee, which couldn’t be more decadent. The Coffee/Tea Guide reminds readers that this recipe combines two of South America’s favorite ingredients, which gives it a Latin flair.

5. Chocolate

Chocolate has long been a symbol of love. Who hasn’t received chocolates in a heart-shaped box from her Valentine? Its richness and that little bit of caffeine probably help to bring out the passion in people. It doesn’t hurt that most people find chocolate treats delicious and irresistible. Some might even say chocolate is as addictive as love itself.

Suggested Recipe – Candy Bar Fudge, which brings together nuts (another aphrodisiac), caramel, and chocolate. This gooey treat comes from the Candy Guide and would make a great surprise for just about anyone.

6. Celery

Strange as it might seem, celery is considered an aphrodisiac because it contains a hormone that men produce, which stimulates sexual desire in women, according to AskMen.com. The fact that it is healthy for you and can provide a serious crunch to any salad is just the cherry on top.

Suggested Recipe – Celery Mint Salad, a recipe that brings together celery, mint, onion, and vinegar. While this healthy dish might seem like anything but sexually stimulating, its freshness and that vinegar will revive your senses. That could lead to all sorts of fun.

7. Bananas

Obviously, it is the phallic shape of bananas that put them on this list. While eating a banana could boost your potassium and delight your sense of taste, it can also be dressed up to create extra special meals and desserts. Think peanut butter and banana sammies or banana splits.

Suggested Recipe – Bananas Foster, a luscious dessert that introduces other aphrodisiacs, such as alcohol. The Baking Guide offers a simple recipe that just about anyone can make.

8. Basil

The inviting aroma of basil could get any lover to come to your bed. It could almost be worn as a perfume, it’s so comforting. And basil, which is the star of dishes such as pesto, serves as a beautiful partner to many a dish. Consider tossing it into a Caprese salad of tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, extra virgin olive oil, and salt.

Suggested Recipe – Tomato Basil Soup, which usually can be served hot or cold, can be as sexy as it is comforting. This recipe from the Low Fat Cooking Guide keeps the calories down by eliminating the heavy cream found in most traditional recipes for the soup.

9. Figs

Figs, with their sweetness and color, make for the perfect addition to a romantic dinner. They can be cloaked in prosciutto for a salty and sweet appetizer or tossed into a salad. But they can also appear in everything from jams to desserts.

Suggested Recipe – Fig Compote, which features a spiced sugar syrup. You’ll find this recipe among nine others in which figs star courtesy of the Local Foods Guide.

10. Vanilla

Some real estate agents put scents of vanilla out or bake cookies with the flavoring when trying to sell homes because people are so drawn to the scent. You could just dab some vanilla extract behind your ears and call it a day or you could come up with creative ways to get the good stuff into your meal.

Suggested Recipe – Vanilla Pastry Cream, a recipe that can be used in everything from cream puffs to profiteroles. The French Food Guide provides step-by-step instructions for this surprisingly quick recipe.

11. Wine

In vino veritas, which means in wine there is truth, says it all. You will show your true feelings with this tasty elixir. Just as you are to your spouse, wine is the perfect companion to a good meal. After all, is there anything sexier than a large goblet of wine in the hands of your lover? Drinking the stuff is great, but you can also incorporate it into a recipe.

Suggested Recipe – Mulled Wine, which is traditionally made for the holidays could be made to heat up just about any night. Courtesy of the Wine Guide, this recipe is sweet to boot.

12. Honey

Honey has healing powers. It has been used to treat everything from a sore throat to acne. Despite its stickiness, which can cause a mess, it has appeared in some bedrooms as well. Still, it’s probably at its best in tangy recipes for everything from chicken wings to dessert.

Suggested Recipe – Blueberry Cornish Hens featuring honey, sage, and, you guessed it, blueberries. The Home Cooking Guide promises a flavor explosion for this fancy, but simple, recipe.

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