Italian – The Food of Love

What could be more romantic than a dinner for two, complete with candlelight and wine? When it comes to the food of love, Italian is one of the most common choices. But just where did this history and holiday originate from? And how can you make that romantic night even better? Here is how.

St. Valentine

While it would seem that Valentine’s Day, the day where the food of love is most often used, would have simple origins, it really is not that clear. There are at least three saints with the name Valentine or Valentinus in the Roman Catholic Church. Some legends suggest that a priest with the name married off soldiers despite a decree by Emperor Claudius II against marriage. When the emperor found out, he killed the priest.

Another legend suggests that Valentine sent the first message of love from prison. Either way, Valentine’s Day is a romantic holiday, and Italian food often works its way into the celebration.

Cupid is also associated with love. Thought to be a cherub that shoots lovers with enchanted arrows, he is supposed to responsible for falling in love. In Italy, on Valentine’s Day unmarried women are to awake at sunrise and look out their window. The first man that passes should be their true love, and marriage should happen before the next year. Many couples still become engaged on Valentine’s Day.

Dinner

Of course the legends of the holiday aside, many romantic traditions are steeped in the food of love. This may be partaking dinner at a favorite restaurant, or cooking their favorite food at home. Some people believe that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, and the thought of cooking a special meal takes this into consideration. And even if you do not believe it, cooking a meal with or for someone can show how much you care and appreciate them – especially if you are not the person that normally cooks. And if your cooking skills leaving something to be desired, consider getting takeout from your favorite Italian restaurant and having a romantic dinner for two at home.

Actual Foods Of Love

If you are looking for foods of love, here are some ingredients that you should include in your Italian cooking. They are thought to be natural aphrodisiacs.

o Allspice
o Asparagus
o Bananas
o Beans
o Broccoli
o Carrots
o Caviar
o Celery
o Champagne
o Chili
o Chocolate
o Cloves
o Coffee
o Dill
o Endive
o Fennel
o Figs
o Garlic
o Ginger
o Ginseng
o Grapes
o Horseradish
o Nutmeg
o Nuts
o Oysters
o Radishes
o Rosemary
o Saffron
o Shrimp
o Tomatoes
o Truffles
o Vanilla

So if you are creating your own menu for your romantic occasion, consider adding in some of these foods of love. You may even notice that many of these ingredients are commonly found in Italian food. Add in a bottle of wine or champagne, candles, and chocolate and you are ready for your own romantic evening for two.