Figs, chocolate, and asparagus often play a featured role in wedding menus, and it’s not just because these foods are delicious; these plant-based delights, along with a seductive slew of others, are foods that have been relied on throughout time to light the fires of romance. Yes, we’re talking aphrodisiacs!
Fruits and vegetables aren't the only things responsible for sparking amorous attraction; love potions from the ancient past were often concocted with aromatic, warming herbs like cinnamon and ginger, and their powers were so potent that they were sometimes banned by local governments for fear of casting the wrong person under their spell.
For a sensual start to your wedded life together (and a memorable meal for your guests), consider integrating these delicious and desire-inducing gifts from the plant kingdom into your wedding feast.
8 Seductive Foods to Get in the Mood
These nuts are among the earliest-cultivated foods and have been regarded as a symbol of fertility throughout history. In fact, the tradition of having almonds at a wedding began during Roman times; instead of rice, guests would throw the nuts at newlyweds. It is also thought that the smell of almonds incites passion in women.
Touted as an aphrodisiac as early as the 17th century, asparagus boosts potassium and folic acid, the latter of which is said to boost histamine production—a necessary component in reaching orgasm for both sexes. Bridegrooms in 19th century France were served three courses of asparagus at their prenuptial dinner.
Avocados boast the famous feminine shape and are high in omega-3 fatty acids and potassium, as well as vitamin B6, which is known to increase male hormone production. They are so effective, in fact, that Spanish priests used to forbid their parishioners from eating them.
Regarded as a symbol of fertility by Hindus, the banana has a sensual shape and is chock full of potassium and B vitamins, both needed to produce sex hormones. Additionally, bananas contain the male libido-enhancing bromelain enzyme.
This member of the mint family helps promote circulation and is believed to stimulate sex drive. In Moldavian folklore, a man is destined to fall in love with a woman if he accepts a sprig of basil from her.
Chocolate is a staple Valentine’s Day gift for a reason—the food is full of compounds including anandaminde, a psychoactive feel-good chemical, and phenylethylamine, a chemical that releases dopamine in the pleasure centers of the brain and produces feelings of excitement and happiness. Cacao also contains tryptophan, which is essential for the brain to release serotonin, a “happiness” chemical.
Believed to have been in the Garden of Eden, figs were also Cleopatra’s favorite fruit and the ancient Greeks associated them with love and fertility. Figs are a great source of flavonoids and antioxidants, and it has been found that figs can increase sexual stamina.
This member of the onion family contains allicin, an ingredient that increases blood flow. In both Hinduism and Jainism, garlic is considered to increase desire, in addition to warming the body. It is well known, however, that this little bulb creates some strong breath when eaten raw!
Aphrodisiac Menu Ideas
Want to try incorporating some of these (in the) mood-boosters at your wedding feast? These Almond Stuffed Mushrooms make a wonderful passed hors d’oeuvre, as do these gorgeous spring rolls and this Bruschetta with Olives and Walnuts. For a first course, consider this Avocado Salad topped with raspberry dressing or Roasted Asparagus with Hazelnut Picada. For the main course, treat your guests to the luscious Carbonada with Seitan or this garlicky Bourbon Jackfruit Chicken. Let’s not forget dessert! This stunning Caramel Fig Vanilla layer cake is divine, but you can’t go wrong with these darling mini tarts that combine two aphrodisiac power houses, chocolate and basil.
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