Love is in the Air… And in the Oven
Have you ever wondered if aphrodisiacs really work? Foods that are considered aphrodisiacs aim to stimulate the senses, but can food or the simple act of eating be sensual? That’s up to you. This V-Day bring home some foods that will ignite your senses and warm you from the inside out. Foods that create warmth and moisture, like chili’s or curry, are thought to arouse passion. So think outside the box like these curried lamb chops, which are both delicious and easy to prepare. You can marinade them all day or simple season them last minute. A quick sear and then into the oven they go. On the side serve a cooling dip that will pair well with the heat, like this zingy mint and lime yogurt dip. To finish your evening and cleanse your palate try some simple melon with a sweet and spicy honey drizzle. Honey is made through pollination and is a symbol of procreation. Do the birds and the bees ring a bell? The rest is up to you. Enjoy!
Curried Lamb Chops with Lime & Mint Yogourt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 rack of lamb, Frenched and cleaned – Might we suggest buying local at Roast Fine Foods #StClairWest
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Arvinda’s Curry Masala
1 cup plain yogourt
juice of one lime
1 clove garlic
½ cup fresh mint leaves, plus extra for garnish
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ cup seedless cucumber, chopped into small pieces
Salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 °F.
- Preheat a large skillet with coconut oil.
- Liberally season the rack of lamb with salt, fresh ground pepper and the curry masala and place the meat in the pan and sear all sides over high heat until evenly browned.
- To finish cooking put the rack on a sheet pan in the oven. (For medium rare leave in the oven about 8 minutes). Cooking times will vary depending on the size of your rack
- Remove the racks and allow to rest at least 10 minutes.
- Place the yogourt, lime juice and garlic in a blender and blend on medium until incorporated. While blending, slowly add the mint and season with salt, cayenne, and cumin. Fold in the cucumber at the last minute prior to serving.
After the rack has rested, cut into individual chops and place on a platter with your dip!
Melon Salad with Vanilla Honey
¼ cup raw honey
¼ cup water
1 star anise
2 cm piece of ginger, peeled and sliced into chunks
1 tablespoon lime juice
Seeds from 1 vanilla pod
½ medium sized cantaloupe
½ medium sized honeydew melon
mint leaves, roughly torn
- Place the honey, star anise, ginger, lime juice and vanilla in a small saucepan with 1/4 cup of water and heat, stirring to dissolve the honey. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
- Cut the melon to desired shape and size. Alternatively use a melon baller to scoop the melons into balls and place into a bowl.
- Strain the honey syrup and pour over the melon. Scatter with mint leaves and serve immediately.
Equipment: Melon Baller
Sara Kuntz is a Culinary Nutritionist who is an advocate for sustainable, delicious, nutrient0dense, whole foods in everyday kitchens. sarakuntz.com
Photography by Sara Kuntz.