If you dropped the ball on making dinner reservations for Valentine’s Day, here’s some food for thought: try cooking a meal. But not just any meal — a sensual recipe from Fork Me, Spoon Me by Aphrodisiac Food and Wine Expert, Amy Reiley.
Reiley, who’s based in LA, had been researching and writing aphrodisiacs for years before she decided to come out with a cookbook with simple recipes to get people in the mood. She expertly weaves her own experience with different mood-enhancing foods with their history and background and wow, did I learn an interesting tidbit or two about a myriad aphrodisiacs…for example, did you know:
– Ginger: “This little exotic spice can make even the most jaded food lover blush, thanks to its ability to raise body heat,” says Reiley in her book.
– Chocolate: The ancient ruler, Montezuma supposedly drank a ritual of 50 cups of chocolate before visiting his harem every day.
– Almonds: Almonds are an international symbol of fertility and considered to be an essential sexual element in Middle Eastern pastries.
Reiley can even vouch for the effectiveness of her sexy recipes with her own experience.
“While I was testing recipes for the book, my roommate introduced me to a friend of hers who was the type of bachelor who relied on ordering delivery every say,” Reiley says. “Because I was cooking every day, I would invite him over to sample the dishes, figuring I’d save him a few delivery charges. Eventually, Fork Me, Spoon Me, along with my recovery, we’re finished and the guy was still around. Now, we’re engaged.”
The book, which is broken down by courses, gives you varied choices. I asked Reiley to recommend a recipe for cooking novices and she recommended the Chocolate Smothered Brie. “It requires nothing more than the ability to melt chocolate and it is satisfying as both dinner and dessert.”
CHOCOLATE SMOTHERED BRIE
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp butter
1 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy cream
6 oz wedge of ripe brie
1 pint strawberries, washed with stems on
1/2 French baguette
Place garlic on a baking tray and sprinkle chunks of butter on top. Toast under the broiler until just brown.
Remove from boiler and toss the hard, golden chips in the melted butter and set aside to rest.
Arrange the brie and strawberries on a serving platter.
In a double boiler or metal mixing bowl fitted onto a small pot of simmering water, gently melt the chocolate chips with the cream over low heat, stirring steadily with a gentle motion. (Note: You can melt chocolate in the microwave, but it burns very easily. Only try this method if you feel sure of your technique.)
When chocolate reaches a smooth, creamy texture, remove from heat and fold in the hard garlic chips.
Smother the cheese with the hot chocolate and allow the sweet topping to drench a few berries.
Serve immediately with a hunk of French bread.
Would you try an aphrodiasic-infused meal? Thoughts??
If you to check our more romantic recipes, get your copy of Amy Reiley’s Fork Me, Spoon Me at your local Borders, Barnes ‘N’ Nobles, or online at http://www.forkmespoonme.com/.