Simply Signal Recipes: Aphrodisiac Edition

These recipes include three different and delicious aphrodisiacs, including salmon, asparagus and citrus. Photo by Isa Cordona | The Signal

With Valentine’s Day on the way, many students are looking for a way to enjoy the holiday with a significant other. A perfect way to get in the mood is with an aphrodisiac-filled romantic dinner. 

An aphrodisiac is a substance that increases sexual desire, sexual pleasure or sexual behavior. There are a wide variety of foods that fit into this category. In this delicious and simple meal for two, the aphrodisiacs include salmon, asparagus and citrus. 

Salmon is a natural aphrodisiac containing omega-3 fatty acids, which elevate dopamine. Asparagus is a good source of Vitamin E, which is involved in stimulating the production of sex hormones. Citrus is super-rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C and folic acid, improving overall sperm health and decreasing the risk of infertility in both sexes.


Time: 5 minutes

Serving: 1


  • 12 fresh spearmint leaves
  • 1/2 lime
  • 7 ounces club soda
  • 2 tablespoon simple syrup (or 4 teaspoons sugar)


  1. In a tall glass, gently crush mint leaves and squeeze a lime. 
  2. Pour simple syrup on top, then fill the glass with crushed ice. 
  3. Add club soda, and stir well.
  4. Garnish with a lime slice, a sprig of mint and serve.

(Recipe from


Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15 to 20 minutes



  • 1 salmon filet cut into two portions 
  • 2 bunches asparagus, fibrous ends removed
  • Salt and black pepper 
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small lemon sliced into rings for garnish


  • 3 ounces unsalted butter, softened 
  • 2 tablespoons  fresh lemon juice from 1 small lemon
  • 4 garlic cloves pressed or minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt 
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit with oven rack in the top third. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, trimming the paper just to fit so that it doesn’t go over the pan’s edges (this prevents the paper from charring under the broiler).


  1. Place salmon fillets in a row down the center of your lined baking pan. Arrange trimmed asparagus on the sides of the salmon. Drizzle asparagus lightly with olive oil and roll to coat. Sprinkle both asparagus and salmon with salt and pepper.
  2. In a medium bowl, use a fork to mash together all ingredients for flavored butter. You can also use a food processor for the job if you prefer.
  3. Spoon 3/4 of your flavored butter over the salmon and spread evenly. Dab the remaining butter mixture over the asparagus. Top each salmon filet with a slice of lemon and bake uncovered at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 to 12 minutes (a thinner fillet will take 10 minutes, and a larger fillet takes 12 minutes). Set the oven to broil and bake another 2 to 3 minutes to give the salmon a golden glow. Bake until salmon is flaky and thoroughly cooked. 

(Recipe from


Prep time: Approximately 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 to 12 minutes

Cooling time: 4 hours or overnight



  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon grapefruit zest
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1 grapefruit, sliced for garnish



  1. In a medium bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, almond flour and salt; set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl with a paddle attachment or two forks, cream together the butter, light brown sugar, vanilla extract and almond extract.
  3. Add dry ingredients into the butter mixture and mix until flour is combined, but the dough is still crumbly.
  4. Remove the dough from the mixing bowl onto a floured surface and lightly knead the dough into a smooth ball.
  5. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  6. Once the dough has chilled, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  7. Between two parchment paper pieces, roll the dough out to 1/8 inch thick and approximately 12 inches around.
  8. Remove the top parchment paper and flip the dough into a tart pan with a removable bottom.
  9. Press the dough to form the tart pan’s shape; if any of the dough breaks, press it back together.
  10. Using a fork, prick holes into the tart shell’s bottom to prevent the dough from puffing up.
  11. Pre-bake the almond shortbread crust for 10 to 12 minutes or until a light golden color.
  12. Remove the tart shell from the oven and allow it to cool while preparing the filling.


  1. In a heatproof bowl (metal or glass), combine the sugar, grapefruit juice, zest, egg yolks and cubed butter.
  2. Whisk all ingredients together and place over boiling water. 
  3. Continuously stir the curd at 180 to 190 degrees Fahrenheit with a wooden spoon until the curd is thick enough to coat the back of the wooden spoon.
  4. Remove the curd from the heat and strain it through a fine sieve.
  5. Pour the grapefruit curd into a glass bowl or jar and refrigerate until cooled.

To assemble the tart, remove the almond shortbread crust from the tart shell and set it aside. Spread the curd into the pre-baked tart shell and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours or overnight to allow the curd to set. Garnish and enjoy.

Recipe from