Top Aphrodisiac Foods and How to Cook Them For Valentine’s Day

We’ve all heard red wine, chocolate and oysters are natural aphrodisiacs, but there are so many more foods that can help you get in the mood. Here are some new ones to try in the kitchen if you’re cooking for someone you love this Valentine’s Day. I included some simple and delicious recipes that use at least two aphrodiciac ingredients in each bite.

  • Avocados: packed with vitamin E, which helps increase testosterone
  • Eggs: rich source of L argentine, which opens up blood vessels
  • Peaches: High in vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that boosts immunity and improves sperm count.
  • Olive Oil: Greeks believed they made men more virile and there’s some truth there. It is a good source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are critical for a healthy heart, blood flow, and hormone production.
  • Salmon: Packed with Omega 3 fatty acids, which keep sex hormone production at its peak
  • Arugula: The peppery, slightly bitter oak-shaped leaves are an effective overall stimulant, providing amazing energy and power to the whole body.
  • Pumpkin Seeds: High in magnesium – 156 mg in just an ounce – which helps raise testosterone levels by pumping more into the blood stream.
  • Hot Chilis: Contains capsaicin, a chemical found in fiery peppers, increases circulation to get blood pumping and stimulates nerve endings
  • Pine Nuts: High in Zinc, which is linked to a healthy sex drive
  • Vanilla: stimulates nerves, making sensation feel even better
  • Pomegranate: According to a study performed at University of California, patients with erectile dysfunction or impotence were 47% more likely to experience an improvement in their ability to maintain an erection with pomegranate juice than those who only used a placebo.
  • Honey: Contains boron, which regulates estrogen and testosterone levels, and provides a natural energy boost.

Chili Salmon with Arugula and Pumpkin Seeds

1 lb Atlantic salmon

2 tbsp soy sauce

4 tbsp packed light brown sugar

2 tbsp hot chili oil

1 cup arugula

2 tbsp pumpkin seeds

salt and pepper

squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Directions:

Marinate the salmon in the soy sauce, brown sugar, salt and pepper, for about 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat a stainless sauté pan on high and add a tablespoon of the chili oil. Sear the salmon on one side for several minutes, flip, then bake in the oven for 5 minutes. Toss the arugula and pumpkin seeds with the remaining chili oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the arugula salad on top of the salmon and squeeze fresh lemon juice before serving.

Avocado Toast

2 avocados

1 loaf high quality Sourdough bread, cut into half inch thick slices

juice from half a lime

coarse ground sea salt

Directions:

Set a grill pan to high heat. Brush the sourdough bread with olive oil (I used California Goldminer, which is a very tangy bread with a crunchy crust) and grill on each side until toasty and grill marks form. Meanwhile, mash the avocados and add the lime juice and salt. Soft boil an egg or pan fry an egg until the white is set but the yolk is still runny. Scoop mashed avocado on top of the toast and place a fried egg on top. Finish with a sprinkling of sea salt

Peach and Basil Bruschetta

1 semi ripe peach, washed and diced

4 fresh basil sprigs

splash of white balsamic vinegar

splash of extra virgin olive oil

pinch of sugar

pinch of salt

1 loaf high quality Sourdough bread, cut into half inch thick slices

Directions:

Set a grill pan to high heat. Brush the sourdough bread with olive oil and grill on each side until toasty and grill marks form. Meanwhile, combine the diced peaches with basil, white balsamic, olive oil, salt and sugar and let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes. Scoop the peaches onto the toast and serve.

Pine Nut Rosemary Brittle (recipe courtesy Saveur magazine)

2 cups sugar

12 cups pine nuts

8 tbsp. unsalted butter

1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary

1 tbsp. finely ground sea salt

Directions:

Heat sugar in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat, and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until it becomes a liquid, golden caramel. Add pine nuts and then butter, and stir until butter is fully absorbed by caramel.

Stir in half each the rosemary and salt, and then pour onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, spreading to create an even layer; sprinkle with remaining rosemary and salt while warm. Let cool completely and then break into bite-size pieces. Store in an airtight container between sheets of wax paper.

 

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