DOUBLE APHRODISIAC | Strawberries dipped in dark chocolate with a touch of pistachio luxury.
Looking for an aphrodisiac to seduce a love interest? Well, look no further than the strawberry. First cultivated in ancient Rome, strawberries are now the most popular berry fruit in the world. In provincial France, they were regarded as an aphrodisiac. What’s more, these red gems are actually antioxidant powerhouses and are beneficial to your heart in more ways than one.
Packed with vitamins, fiber, and particularly high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols, strawberries are a sodium-free, fat-free, cholesterol-free, low-calorie food. They are among the top 20 fruits in antioxidant capacity and are a good source of manganese and potassium. Did you know that just one serving – about eight strawberries – provides more vitamin C than an orange?
Not fond of the standalone strawberry? Fear not, you can easily and radically transform these delicate heart-shaped gems into decadent works of art in less than 30 minutes. To bolster the aphrodisiac qualities, simply dip the luscious fruit into dark chocolate that has been melted in a bain marie. For that extra touch of luxury, coat the strawberry with a layer of crushed pistachio (or desiccated coconut).
Chocolate Dipped Strawberries With Pistachio
TIME: 30 minutes | YIELDS: 10-12 large strawberries
- Box of long stemmed strawberries
- 1 pack (~100g) of quality dark chocolate (> 70%),
- 1 cup of pistachios, crushed (desiccated coconut is an alternate option)
- Line a roasting tray with parchment paper. Melt chocolate in a bain marie (double boiler method).
- In the meantime while chocolate is melting, crush pistachios gently in a mortar and pestle to break them apart into tiny chunks.
- Once chocolate has melted, hold the stem of the strawberry and dip the strawberries one-by-one in the melting pot of chocolate goodness and rotate 360 degrees to ensure it is coated all over.
- Before the chocolate solidifies, quickly roll the strawberry into the crumbed pistachio and rotate all over.
- Once complete, layer on the prepared roasting tray. Repeat the process for the other strawberries. If you fancy, instead of using pistachio, you can also roll the strawberries in a layer of desiccated coconut.
- Stick the tray in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes before serving.
BANANA-RAMA | Banana, desiccated coconut, and crushed walnuts unite to create a moist and wholesome financier.
I have truly jumped onto the financier bandwagon. This time, seeing I had two overly ripe bananas sitting inside my fruit bowl, rather than let them expire and go to waste, I decided to put them to good use by creating some banana financiers with desiccated coconut and crushed walnuts. The banana adds an extra degree of moistness and ‘stickiness’ to the basic financier recipe (not to mention flavor and fibre). And because bananas are naturally sweet, I’ve drastically reduced the sugar content by more than half (more or less to keep the waistline “trim”).
To make these financiers even more healthy, I’ve incorporated walnuts into the mixture. Walnuts contain the amino acid l-arginine, which offers multiple vascular benefits to people with heart disease, or those who have increased risk for heart disease due to multiple cardiac risk factors. Walnuts also contain several unique and powerful antioxidants that are available in only a few commonly eaten foods. This includes the quinone juglone, the tannin tellimagrandin, and the flavonol morin.
One of the lesser-known benefits of walnuts is their impact on male fertility. Among men who consume a Western-style diet, adding 75 grams (a bit over one-half cup) of walnuts daily significantly improved sperm quality, including vitality, motility, and morphology.
Afternoon tea? Serve these freshly baked financiers with a cup of warm or organic tea.
TIME: 30 minutes | Makes: 12 financiers
- 125 grams of butter, melted
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 70 grams dessicated coconut
- 50 grams almond flour
- 70 grams plain flour
- 50 gram walnuts
- 6 egg whites
- 50 grams of icing sugar
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius (350 degress farenheit). Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat until it browns. Brush some of this butter on to the financier mould or muffin tin. Leave remaining butter to cool at room temperature.
- Mash ripe bananas in a shallow dish.
- Crush walnuts into small pieces in a mortar and pestle.
- Whisk egg whites in a separate bowl. Once done, add melted butter into the mixture.
- Combine all the almond flour, plain flour, icing sugar, crushed walnuts, and desiccated coconut together in a separate bowl. Fold in the egg white mixture into the flour mixture and continue to fold until well combined.
- Pour batter into the financier moulds, until 2/3rds full each. Bake in oven for ~16-20 minutes until golden brown.
- Turn financiers out on a wire rack to cool. Dust with icing sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature. Financiers can be stored in an airtight container for several days.