Looking for something different for this Valentine’s Day? Treat your sweetheart to these uniquely seductive items that take advantage of the sexy science behind the foods that get you in the mood!
Jen’s Cakes & Pasteries is selling her delicious Real Hot Chocolate Mix, and light and fluffy Bittersweet-Dipped Peppermint Marshmallows for chocolaty Valentine’s love, but what I think is a MUST is her Caliente Love Brownies, with spicy chilis and cinnamon. The capsaicin in chili peppers is a chemical that stimulates our nerve endings and raises our pulse, and combined with chocolate (another known stimulus) make these brownies one spicy aphrodisiac. You can ask for your brownies to be heart-shaped brownies for Valentine’s Day.
Lindt Master Swiss Chocolatier at Palmer Square sells lots of heart-shaped boxes of truffles. Bypass those and go to the Excellence Chili Bar. It combines Lindt’s aromatic dark chocolate (47% cocoa) with the spice of red chili. Here’s another chocolate/chili combo for a one-two punch like above. Put a few bars in a gift basket for your sweetheart, and wait for the sparks to fly.
Simply Nic’s Artisinal Shortbread is to die for. I have some Scottish heritage, which is why I think I love shortbread so much, but this is nothing I’ve ever tasted before. I had to control myself to stop eating it. I’ve had the lavender and cardamom-ginger, and love them both. Nicole, the owner, makes rosemary and espresso-cocoa nib in addition, and explained the effects the ingredients have on people. Lavender gives you the feelings of devotion and trust, rosemary – love and remembrance, ginger – increased feeling of love (an aphrodisiac), and chocolate – power, luxury and romance. This basically means that almost all of her shortbread is nice for Valentine’s Day, but you should REALLY buy the Cardamom-Ginger!
Mediterra‘s Chef Luis Bollo has created a special four-course tasting menu for guests wanting to dine out, featuring ingredients chosen for their aphrodisiac effects. Wine pairing is available. Here is the prix-fixe Valentine’s Day menu (on the right), which will be offered this Friday-Monday for $59 per person. Tip: Go on Sunday to avoid the crowds, be served sooner, so you can leave earlier!
Eno Terra‘s Chef Christopher Albrect is also offering a prix-fixe Valentine’s Weekend aphrodisiac tasting menu for $59 per person: Antipasti: Spiced Nantucket Bay scallops with sweet potato purée and pea tendrils, or Red Butterhead Lettuce, or Watercress-Potato Soup with speck, Merken oil and olive oil fried croutons ~ Primi: Whole Wheat Rigatoni alla Carbonara with guanciali, Parmigiano Reggiano, parsley and Cherry Grove eggs or Casonsai with roasted beets, smoked ricotta cheese and toasted walnuts ~ Secondi: Simply Grazin’ Grilled Beef Filet Mignon with Yukon Gold potato purée, marinated broccoli rabe and onion rings, or Golden Tile Fish al Cartoccio with winter root vegetables, lemon, roasted garlic, heirloom potatoes hash and herbs, or Vegetable Risotto with fennel and butternut squash ~ Dolce: Cannoli with ricotta impastata, mascarpone, candied citrus zest, spiced dark chocolate, white chocolate and pistachio. The upper level has some nice hide-away spots just in case the food has an immediate effect.
The Brothers Moon‘s Chef Will Mooney is serving up their 10th Annual Aphrodisiac Menu for $79 per person. Click on “Valentines Day” to download their prix-fixe menu. They underline all of the items in the menu that will jump-start your evening of romance.
The Bent Spoon just added some great flavors with alluring properties for this Valentine’s weekend! Click on “Flavaflav” at the top left of the page for a listing of love-themed artisan ice cream for these days of romance. What particularly stands out to rev you up is the honey BEE mine with NJ honey (honey is very sensuous – think Honeymoon), chocolate port (2-in-1), spark berry sorbet (sultry organic berries, peach & champagne – need I say more?), chocolate red HOTT with heirloom peppers (another 2-in-1 combo).