February 13th 2012

Hot aphrodisiacs (and how to use them)

Sure, going out to a romantic dinner on Valentine’s Day seems to be just the thing to do, but with expensive prix fixe menus, over-the-top decor, obligatory chocolates and flowers… does it really matter?

The ultimate love feast shouldn’t have to be in an overpriced, fancy restaurant where dozens of couples are around you doing the same.

Instead, consider staying in and master a meal that uses these top aphrodisiac foods, servings to ignite the passion and make for a pretty amazing meal, too.


Asparagus’ number one love enhancer is thanks to its phallic shape. But it also has the ability to boost the production of histamine, which is necessary to achieve orgasm. In general, foods that resemble certain body parts tend to have a direct effect on those said body parts. This is, of course, it’s strong resemblance to the male body part. To add asparagus to your meal, serve it along a cheese fondue, saute it in a skillet with butter, pancetta, and shallots, or roast with a bit of lemon and parmesan.


Moving on to the female, the inside of figs are said to resemble the sex organs in a woman. It has also been well-touted as a stimulant for arousal, and have long been remembered as a sensual fruit. Think of this: Adam and Eve even wore figs to cover their exposed private regions, and the ancient Greeks knew figs to be a fruit that was sacred and associated with love and fertility. Prepare flat breads with fig and caramelized onions, or bake inside a loosely formed tart for a quick galette. Serve them atop a salad with fresh goat cheese and toasted walnuts.


Back in Aztec times, avocado trees were referred to as “Ahuacuati” which literally is translated to “testicle tree.” The silky, oval avocado inspires thoughts of a curvy, luscious body, the texture is often described as sensual. Step aside from the guacamole, and use as a highlight in the dish instead. Slather avocado on freshly baked bread, or toss with grapefruit and greens for a delicious side salad.


Oysters are one of the most common aphrodisiacs. Their sexual properties have long since been recorded by the Italians; those Romans were reaping their benefits as far back as the second century A.D. This is all due in thanks to their suggestive shape and briny flavor. Even Casanova, the well-known Venetian lover from the eighteenth century, dined on fifty oysters a day.  Keep it simple with a pasta dish, or an appetizer of steamed oysters in a light broth.


Though the chocolate ones are just as sexy, we’re talking the truffles that are akin to the mushroom. The strong, signature scent of the truffle is rumoured to be able to increase the skin’s sensitivity to touch. Their earthy aroma and rarity also makes them a luxury, adding just that much more to any dish. Use with fresh linguine and herbs, along with a good olive oil, drizzle on freshly baked bread, or prepare a creamy risotto. You can also buy truffle oil, and use it to for salads, dipping, or as a flavor agent in your dishes.


For centuries, sweet basil has been used to amp up that sex drive. In Moldavian folklore, woman would offer men a sprig of basil. If he accepts, he will be destined to fall in love with her. Use fresh basil to make a silky pesto, add it to a dish to give it some italian flair, or, if all else fails, just offer up a sprig.


We already know that a lot of love-infused desserts are brimming with chocolate. However, there is more to it than just its delicious taste. From a scientific point of view, chocolate  contains chemicals that affect neurotransmitters in our brain, which naturally increases our libido. Anandamide, which is the psyochoactive feel-good chemical, and PEA (phenylethylamine), the ‘love chemical’ are both contained in chocolate, and they release dopamine (IE pleasure) in our brain. PEA is also said to help create excitement, attraction, and euphoria. Cacao, chocolate in its natural state, also contains tryptophan, a key component of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which increases relaxation. Make up a chocolate dessert right now; one that is easy and will wow your lover.


Medieval women used to use rosemary in their baths, which would cover their bodies with its strong scent. This, thankfully, was a good idea, because rosemary is said to naturally evoke sex. The aroma balances spicy with woodsy flowery… a perfect balance of male and female.  Use rosemary in dry rubs on a roasted meat, tossed with roasted vegetables, or a way to lightly season a soup.

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Andrew loves art and design, and pursues his studies in his final year at the Ontario College of Art and Design. He loves seeking out new artists and giving them their dues, and in his spare time, focuses on his own abstract sculpture.