STORIES - Aphrodisiac
Is any food an aphrodisiac ? I think the circumstances and the company can add a frisson of interest to a repast. There have been two meals cooked for me that are inextricably associated with seduction, neither involved food that is traditionally identified as being an aphrodisiac. The first involved chicken livers, sauteed, with a cream and brandy dressing, served with a green salad and a bottle of red. I can recall this meal because it was the first visit to my future partner’s rented basement flat in Paddington and it was the first and last meal cooked for me during the next 40 years, after this I cooked every meal at home.
The second was a very simple meal of fillet steak with steamed broccoli and carrots, I can remember it as being absolutely delicious and still enjoy cooking a similar meal at home. But the original was cooked on the occasion of the first visit to a lover’s home, we both knew that this was definitely foreplay, the glances and small talk during preparation and cooking, the pouring of red wine, setting the table and tabling the meal, the eating of which was never finished.
The “Appetite for Love” print started out after reading a media report of a survey in New York that “explored the role that food plays in love. While it confirms that “the way to a man's heart is through his stomach” was true for a slight majority of men, it also indicated that for nearly half of the women surveyed, food is the way to their own hearts. The vast majority agreed that food plays an incredibly important role in their relationships.” I also had in mind such sayings as cooking is love, certain foods are aphrodisiacs and that the ultimate food of love is the first food you receive from your mother.