An erotic offer

Casanova started his day with 50 raw oysters. Well, if you fancy yourself as one this Valentine’s Day, here are fancy aphrodisiac-laden dishes whipped up by experts to keep your love quotient high

An erotic offer

Mona

There is no love sincerer than the love of food...wrote George Bernard Shaw. But then there are foods that can lead to love. Legend has it that Casanova started his day with 50 raw oysters to last his endless trysts. Right from asparagus to oysters, different traditions give aphrodisiacs due weightage. 

Derived from the Greek goddess of love Aphrodite, aphrodisiacs are foods and drinks that stimulate sexual desire. Do they make it to tricity menu on the day of love? Well, yes!

An ethereal setting and aphrodisiacs in plenty, Chef Krishan Hari has curated a special menu for the day of love at Virgin Courtyard. 

Rocket parmesan soufflé with complimentary fig mostarda is one option to dig in. For dessert, if you want to give chocolate soufflé a miss, you can go for wine-soaked strawberries. 

“If it’s exotic, it must be erotic,” offers Chef Krishan Hari. The crown of aphrodisiacs lies with rare and expensive food. “When aphrodisiacs like potatoes and cocoa became readily available, they lost their tags as love stimulants,” he takes us through history. “Foods that stimulate the senses are considered to stimulate passion too,” says the chef, who has ensured to have smooth, rich, creamy textures peppered with exotic and spicy flavours for the special day. 

The Great Bear Kitchen and Microbrewery has its special menu set too to celebrate the spirit of love. From starters like strawberry and feta salad to caramelised onion & mushroom crostini for starters to red velvet and strawberry sundae for sweets, Priyanka Gupta has her chef up the game. “Tricity clientele demands something fresh, something new, and to fulfil their demands is our job. We have the red hearts spread across our plates to celebrate the spirit.” 

Celebrating Valentine’s Day, Oregano at JW Marriott Chandigarh, is all set to serve four sensuous courses of delicious aphrodisiac-infused delicacies, masterfully curated by the Chef Jacopo Avigo. “The menu will feature classics like Tagliata di Anguria, a refreshing entrée bringing together watermelon, peanuts, feta, mint and arugula; Tartare di Zucca, a starter of pumpkin, avocado, olives, amaretto and goat cheese; Risotto Verde, a dish from the first main course consisting of Arborio rice, red onion, asparagus and mint and an exclusive dessert Cuore di cioccolato, a heart shaped chocolate mousse cake flavoured with strawberries and red roses. 

“In an ode to the romantic fervour of Valentine’s Day, we have incorporated an interesting array of local and seasonal aphrodisiac ingredients to bring you a tempting menu laden with flavours purported to add passion and spice to your day,” says Chef Avigo.  Aphrodisiacs, according to expat Italian Chef de Cuisine, are ingredients that are healthy for us to consume. “Augula is an excellent source of Vitamin C and an essential for a date night. Likewise, asparagus has been considered an aphrodisiac for hundreds of years and is also incredibly nutritious as well as high in foliate and avocado, a super food, also has powerful aphrodisiac components such as Vitamin E, beta carotene and magnesium.”

Strawberries and chocolates stay hot as cake flavours this time around too. Gayatri Sood from Monica’s has introduced special flavours— Passion of Love that has passion fruit with other seasonal fruits; Strawberry Sensation, a cut strawberry cake and Chocolate Love – a dark chocolate cake with a hint of hazelnut. “And due to great demand we  will be doing our popular cakes in heart shape too, like chocolate truffle, mud cake, strawberry chocolate, coconut and many more,” she lists.

Familiar sights

Aphrodisiacs needn’t be rare and expensive, clarifies nutritionist Pallvi Jassal. The strawberry is hailed as the food of love, but the humble, nutrient-rich banana is as good to give your libido a push. Anything brightly coloured your best bet. “Watermelon rind, rich in non-essential amino acid citrulline, increases blood flow leading to sexual arousal,” she explains. Chocolates that have chemicals like phenylethylamine and polyphenols put one in good mood. Vitamin E, B and potassium in asparagus are sexually stimulating. Capsaicin in chilli peppers, flavonoids, and polyphenols in figs lead to the release of epinephrine ? also known as adrenaline leading to a high relaxation and well being,” she said. Sea foods like oysters not only get the aphrodisiac tag for its nutrient value but also being suggestive in looks. Back to strawberries, its vitamin C, which helps keep blood flowing to all parts of the body, so you get the picture! And there is wine. Well, that alcohol dissolves inhibitions is a fact known to all...

mona@tribunemail.com

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