Wednesday Food: Aphrodisiac Chili

Chili, really?  An aphrodisiac?  If you don't think chili can be sexy, then you have thought wrong!  I was doing a little research on aphrodisiacs, and found that I have a great recipe for chili that is jam packed with some of the sexiest ingredients out there!  Black beans, chocolate and chiles!!!

For those who are not familiar with aphrodisacs, they can be food, drugs* or scents that are said to promote sexual desire.  Probably the most famous would be oysters.  Some act as vasodilators and help get the blood pumping, like chiles.  Some produce more of a feel-good sensation, like chocolate.  And others, just by sheer representation bring about "sexual thoughts", like black beans.  Many times aphrodisiacs are just healthy foods - because when you feel healthy, well doncha feel sexy???

* No, not Viagra.. that has nothing to do with sexual desire!

This recipe comes from one of our CIA cookbooks Techniques of Healthy Cooking.  I've messed with the recipe a little here and there, and it's still a favorite.  Deep, dark and spicy!  And, it's also a vegan recipe!  

If your worried about having garlic and onion breath, remember whomever you're sharing it with will have the same - you won't even notice.  And if your thinking its too late for Valentine's dinner, it's never too late!  When the big day lands on a weekday, make Valentine's Day into a week long event! 

Black Bean Chili

olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 T. cumin seeds
1 T. paprika
1/2 t. cinnamon
 2 celery ribs, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 fresno peppers, chopped (if you have a favorite pepper, feel free to switch it up!)
1 28oz. can of chopped tomatoes
1 15.5oz. can of black beans, drained
1 T. cocoa
about 2 T. fresh cilantro, cleaned and rough chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

1) Let's start this off with heating up the oil in your soup/stew pot.  Add the onions and garlic and saute for a few minutes.  Add the spices (cumin seeds, paprika and cinnamon) and let is roast a bit to bring out the flavor. (Sound familiar?)

2) Let it saute for a few minutes and then add your veggies (celery, peppers, and fresno pepper).  I also included a few of the seeds from the fresno, so it would have an extra kick of spice!  Cook till they start to soften and start giving off some juices, about 10 minutes. (Don't forget to wash your hands thoroughly after chopping the hot pepper!)

3) Add the tomatoes and black beans.  At this point you can let it cook down for about 3 hours on a low simmer.  Till the veggies are cooked all the way through. I added a little water to make sure everything was covered by liquid as it cooked.

4) About 10 minutes before you serve, add the cocoa and fresh cilantro and stir.  Don't forget to season with salt and pepper!  Feel free to add your favorite accoutrements like tortilla chips, sour cream or salsa.  For an extra energy boost, (and another aphrodisiac) add some avocado slices or guacamole.  And there ya have it!

StellaBella fans will know, I have a love affair with chili.  Not only is this a sexy one, but it also comes at a very good time.  It's cold out so with the added bit of cinnamon in there, it gives a nice warm taste and scent.  Perfect for a cold February night! 

All right, everyone go forth and make sweet, sweet love... in the kitchen!


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