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Foods A-Z

Edward FitzGerald knew what he was talking about when he said: "A jug of wine a loaf of bread and thou." People have been using alcohol to stimulate the libido for centuries. But while a moderate amount of alcohol will reduce anxiety and release inhibitions one glass too many is more likely to put you asleep than put you in the mood.

A popular garlic recipe from the southeastern region of France. In summer, entire villages hold food festivals featuring this sauce called the "Butter of France." For an aphrodisiacal treat use it as a dip for either artichokes or asparagus. You'll find a recipe for Aiola on page 111 of our book Food as Foreplay: Recipes for Romance, Love and Lust.

Antlers and horns are considered to be aphrodisiacs especially in Eastern Asia. Why? Because they resemble an erect penis. Antlers are ground up into a powder and sprinkled on food or into drinks. Generally not available in your local Chinese take-out, but you can always ask if they'll make a special order for you.

The ancient Chinese considered this round thin skinned fruit (which originated in China) to be a symbol of a sensual nature. Try feeding your lover fresh apricots which are available from May to July. Look for fragrant fruits with a red blush that gives slightly to pressure.

Katherine De Medici was considered scandalous by the French court for eating large quantities of artichokes. Her husband, Henry, didn't seem to mind.

The simple act of stripping an artichoke of its leaves, dipping them into butter and scrapping off the tender flesh with your teeth is a very sensual experience. Simply cut off the artichoke's thorny tips, snap off the tough leaves, slice off the stem and rub with lemon juice. Steam until tender, about 30-60 minutes. Try dipping artichokes into curried mayonnaise, lemon or herb butter or vinaigrette.

Perhaps the most erotic member of the vegetable kingdom. In nineteenth century France bridegrooms were required to eat several courses consisting of asparagus, asparagus and more asparagus because of its reputed powers to arouse. The best way to eat this member of the lily family is steamed or boiled and dressed with butter, olive oil or Hollandaise sauce.

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