Asparagus? Spare us the fuss. Caviar, you too. And oysters? You may have stirred things up in the past, but it’s really starting to get old — the whole I’m-the-only-aphrodisiac-anyone-ever-thinks-about thing. Even chocolate, well… Ok, so maybe not chocolate, but surely you see what we’re getting at here. The same list of libido-inspiring foods, unleashed year after year, has grown stale. It’s no secret that spontaneity is the key ingredient to any recipe for romance, so play it cool this Valentine’s Day and beyond with eight fresh alternatives to the old, standard stuff.
Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines…
1. Watermelon’s Randy Rind
Did you know that watermelon can make you randy? The closer you get to the rind, the more it relaxes and expands blood vessels. If you aren’t feeling it, or the little blue pill, try this sweet treat instead…
Mixed Melon Salad with Cilantro and Lime (pictured above)
Spicy Melon and Serrano Ham
Watermelon, Ginger and Lime Granitas
2. Hello Fennel, So Long Silicone
This bulb-shaped vegetable has a texture like celery (another aphrodisiac) and a lightly intoxicating licorice flavor. Fennel’s nutrients mimic the effects of estrogen and have even been rumored to have an effect on breast size. So long, Silicone.
3. Celery: The Chick-Magnet Cologne?
Celery stimulates sexual arousal in women. After a guy eats celery, it acts as a chick-magnet of sorts, using its natural scent to turn women on. Call it an earthy, crunchy alternative to rolling up in a cloud of Axe Body Spray.
4. Vanilla – Plain Old? Please…
Dr. John King praised its ability to “stimulate the sexual propensities,” and Neurologist Alan Hirsch recently proclaimed it the one scent most potent in its ability to arouse men. It’s no surprise that when it was first made commercially available in the early 1900s, many American women preferred to use it as perfume.
Vanilla Meringues (pictured above)
Vanilla-Scented Sweet Potato Puree
Roasted Pears with Cardamom Granola and Vanilla Ice Cream
5. Pomegranate: The Real Forbidden Fruit?
Eaten regularly by the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite, some say the forbidden fruit of the Bible was not apple at all, but rather its far more flamboyant counterpart, the pomegranate.
6. Figs Are One Scandalous Fruit
Adam and Eve wore fig leaves to cover their private parts, and Cleopatra is fabled to have called them her favorite fruit. Whether it has anything to do with their voluptuous shape, sweet dark flesh and honey scent is hard to confirm, but an open fig has long been thought to resemble the female sex organs.
Fig and Blue Cheese Flatbread (pictured above)
Figs Wrapped in Prosciutto with Gorgonzola and Brie
Baked Figs with Grappa
7. Pine Nuts: You Zinc-ing What I’m Zinc-ing…?
A key ingredient in any proper love potion, pine nuts have been used to stimulate the libido as far back as Medieval times and are ripe for the ingesting (precisely) this time of year. Few things get the pheromones flowing like a little dose of zinc, and these earthy nuts are pretty well-endowed when it comes to the miracle-working mineral.
8. Saffron: The Top Shelf Turn On
Saffron’s reputation as a sexual drug has long helped skyrocket its lavish lifestyle as the world’s priciest food per pound, but when it’s referenced in the Old Testament’s scandalous Song of Songs and rumored to have been added to Cleopatra’s baths to enhance her lovemaking, you’ve got to ask yourself – what’s all the fuss about? – and then go find out.
Saffron Rice (pictured above)
Soft-Shell Crab BLT with Saffron Aioli and Peppercress
What foods have a sexy effect on you?
Note: The above aphrodisiac information is speculative and not medically proven.