More than one reason to be ginger obsessed.
So my assignment for the Daily Pennsylvanian “Recipe of the Week” column for next week is to come up with a recipe / story on an aphrodisiac food. Those of you who’ve been around me for a bit may be aware that I was more than slightly obsessed with aphrodisiacs for a several months last year, starting right around February when I got a cookbook entitled The New Intercourses: an aphrodisiac cookbook. Now I have to say that this was one of the best gifts ever, not so much because the cookbook itself was so wonderful, I’ll get to that in a moment, but more because it really started me thinking about the notion of sensation and food and how these two are so closely intertwined. Now, as I mentioned, I wasn’t that impressed with the actual book, in fact I thought it needed a lot of help. There were some beautiful pictures of naked women strategically draped with various aphrodisiac foods, but the recipes seemed to have no rhyme or reason, and the personal stories that went along with them often had a follow-up in which they related how the couple had subsequently broken up, yeah there’s a real endorsement if I’ve ever heard one. So I was inspired to think about potentially writing my own aphrodisiac cookbook, something I’ve still got stewing in the back of my mind. But what I wanted to get around to here was a bit of a discussion about one food in particular in the book, i.e. ginger. I love ginger, I put it in everything, I add it when a recipe seems to be lacking some je ne sais qoi, I add it when I run out of other ingredients. So let’s just take a few moments to explore the wonders of this spicy little root.
Part of my crusade for ginger stems from the fact that it is supposed to be good for migraines (something I’ve suffered from for the last 17 or so years), and whether it really is helping or not, my headaches have been less frequent lately (due on the whole to a less stressful lifestyle), and I’m unwilling to give it up if it seems to be working. And now for the aphrodisiac qualities, apparently ginger causes your blood to thin, allowing it to flow easily to all areas of your system, and (here’s a quote from the book) “engorging the body’s most sensitive areas with oxygen-rich blood.” With effects / praise like that, I don’t know why we’re all not wandering around continually sucking on ginger candy. So, if you haven’t yet tried the carrot ginger dressing, or haven’t bought candied ginger in you can’t remember how long, maybe now is the time to rethink your habits. If nothing else, it will add a little bit of kick to your cooking, some pizzazz to your dining, and a bounce to your step.
One thing I will say about aphrodisiacs as a group, it seems that there are two general classes of them, those that have actual physical effects that might enhance your feelings of amour or your “performance” shall we say, and those which make you think about sex, a combination of texture, color and smell. I personally prefer the latter group because then aphrodisiacs are a personalized experience. What foods turn you on?