To stimulate desire, the ancient Romans dined on hippo snouts and hyena eyeballs for their aphrodisiac effects. To stir their libidos, the Chinese have dined on such rare delicacies as rhino horn.
If you want to serve a meal that leads to intimacy this Valentine’s Day, try Pepper Steak with Cognac below developed and advised by sex therapist and author Linda De Villers author of Simple Sexy Food.
De Villers says sharing our bodies and our food is very intimate and some of life’s fondest memories are built around these two biological necessities.
Pepper Steak with Cognac (or ‘Steak au Poivre’)
S E X Y FOODS: pepper, spirits, steak, onion (shallots), parsley
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
2 boneless beef steaks, rib-eye, sirloin, or filet mignon, 3/4 to 1 inch thick, 6 to 8 ounces each
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons butter
Salt to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons butter plus 1 to 2 tablespoons softened butter
1 1/2 teaspoons minced shallot
1/4 cup beef stock
2 tablespoons Cognac
Flat-leaf parsley or watercress for garnishing
1. To prepare the steaks: Roughly crush the peppercorns.
2. Trim excess fat from the steaks and dry the meat with paper towels. Sprinkle half of the peppercorns on one side of each steak and press into the meat. Repeat on the other side of the steaks. Cover with wax paper and set aside for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour to allow the pepper flavor to penetrate.
3. Preheat a warmer drawer or an oven to 180°F.
4. Add the oil and butter to a small-to-medium, heavy skillet just big enough to hold both steaks in one layer. Heat on medium-high until the butter foam begins to subside.
5. Sauté the steaks on one side for 3 to 4 minutes, keeping the fat hot, but not burning. Turn the steaks and cook the other side, about the same time for medium rare, less for rarer meat (see Tip.)
6. Remove the steaks from the pan, sprinkle with salt, and keep warm in the oven or warmer drawer.
7. To make the sauce: Pour out the fat but do not clean the skillet. Set the skillet over medium heat and add the 1 1/2 teaspoons butter and shallots. Cook slowly for 1 minute, then add the stock. Raise heat to high and boil down the liquid rapidly, while scraping up cooking bits and juices.
8. Add the Cognac and boil rapidly for about 1 minute to evaporate the alcohol. Remove the pan from heat and swirl in the softened butter, 1 1/2 teaspoons at a time.
9. Pour the sauce over the steaks and garnish with parsley or watercress. Serve immediately.
Simple Sexy Kitchen Tip:
Steak is s sexiest when it’s tender, juicy, and blushing inside with rosy shades. If you’re used to steak cooked through, be adventurous and try it medium rare, just this once. It might inspire a little adventure in the bedroom as well!
When participants of a survey were asked to create their own sexy menu, steak was among the top main dish choices, particularly among young men, 22-25. Potatoes were a favorite pairing, which just goes to prove that certain mainstay combinations hold definite aphrodisiac appeal.
Peppercorns are spicy berries native to India or Malaysia. Their aphrodisiac reputation as sexual “energy” boosters dates back thousands of years. They are mentioned in both the Kama Sutra (2nd century, BCE) and in the 15th century Arabic text, The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Delight. Like sweet peppers, their color variations reflect changes with time. At the time of picking, they’re green; as they dry in the sun, they transform from red, to yellow, to brown, and finally to black. If the black husk is removed after the drying process, the result is white peppercorns, the very spiciest. Pepper ground from peppercorns was so valued in early European times that it was used as currency. Pepper in all forms stimulates saliva flow, so it’s a perfect choice to “whet” your appetite in many ways!
For many, the deep satisfaction that comes from occasional indulgence in a tender, juicy steak is surpassed only by more frequent indulgence in the tender embrace of a lover. Juicy is good.
For dessert choose the recipe you wish to entice with
Cherries Jubilee Crêpes
Poached Pears with Raspberry Brandy Sauce
Chocolate Mousse with Brandied Whipped Cream
Banana Crêpes Flambées
For a drink to go with the meal you can whip up:
Great Balls of Melon
Between the Sheets
Hotsy Totsy Toddy
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Category: Men & Dating