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Friday, July 27, 2012

Dana Littlejohn, Recipes, and a new release!

Today I'd like to welcome Dana Littlejohn and her new release, To Have and To Hold. Dana will be awarding five prizes, one randomly chosen commenter at each tour stop will win a prize. All are promo items displaying a different Dana Littlejohn design: 2- t-shirts (size XL), 1 coffee mug, 1 ink pen (black ink) and 1 baseball style hat.

Want a chance to win? Want more than one chance? Comment! And follow her tour.

Hello Everyone!
First I want to thank Kristabel for having me. Kristabel asked me to share some recipes that I love. As I built my character, Andrea Cooper, I decided I wanted her to like cooking. Since she and her husband are empty-nesters I thought it might be fun for her to cook with known aphrodisiac foods to keep her husband interested. I hit the internet and cookbooks to do my homework. I learned that some foods have a direct impact on your sex life. They arouse because they are psychologically suggestive or actually increase blood flow to the genitals, affect your hormones and brain chemistry.

I found a few recipes that were chock full of these foods. They are now a part of my usual repertoire and I would like to share them with you. :)

Dana, the very fact that you did all this research for a book is fabulous! I love that. And thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your finds. And we all know how I love my cooking!

Garlic is full of allicin, an ingredient that will increase blood flow.
Basil not only makes the meals smell and taste better, but it also very stimulating.
Maybe this explains why Italians are known for being so romantic!

Italian sausage pasta
1 pound Italian sausage links
1/2 pound pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 (16 ounce) can canned tomatoes
1 (16 ounce) can canned tomato sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf


  • Removed casing from sausage links and cut into 1/2 inch slices. In a large skillet, brown sausage over medium heat for about 10 minutes; remove and set aside.

  • In a large skillet, heat ground beef, olive oil, garlic and onion over medium heat until meat is nicely browned; drain.

  • Pour in tomatoes and tomato sauce; mix in salt, ground black pepper, basil, oregano, bay leaf and cooked sausage. Simmer uncovered for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

  • Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.

  • Mix cooked sauce with hot pasta and remove bay leaf from sauce before serving.
Oysters are high zinc content which helps produce sperm and increases libido. Most people are aware of their reputation for increasing sexual desire thus sealing their fate as being a powerful aphrodisiac. Add a glass of champagne for a romantic meal appetizer!

Oysters Rockefeller
· 2 slices bacon
· 24 unopened, fresh, live medium oysters
· 1 1/2 cups cooked spinach
1/3 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 dash hot pepper sauce
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 cups kosher salt


  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (220 degrees C). Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown.

  • Drain, crumble and set aside.

  • Clean oysters and place in a large stockpot.

  • Pour in enough water to cover oysters; bring the water and oysters to a boil.

  • Remove from heat and drain and cool oysters.

  • When cooled break the top shell off of each oyster.

  • Using a food processor, chop the bacon, spinach, bread crumbs, green onions, and parsley.

  • Add the salt, hot sauce, olive oil and anise-flavored liqueur and process until finely chopped but not pureed, about 10 seconds.

  • Arrange the oysters in their half shells on a pan with kosher salt.

  • Spoon some of the spinach mixture on each oyster.

  • Bake 10 minutes until cooked through, then change the oven's setting to broil and broil until browned on top.

  • Serve hot.
I couldn’t let you go without a recipe for something chocolate. As a self proclaimed chocoholic, I am fully aware of its benefits. Pure chocolate, the king of natural aphrodisiacs, contains a host of compounds including anandamide, the psyochoactive feel-good chemical, and PEA (phenylethylamine), the "love chemical," which releases dopamine in the pleasure centers of the brain and peaks during orgasm. PEA is said to help induce feelings of excitement, attraction and euphoria.

Chocolate Covered Cherries
1 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
8 ounces semisweet dark chocolate, chopped
24 Bing cherries with stems


  • Pour the sugar into a shallow dish.

  • Drop two drops of vanilla at a time into the dish in 24 separate places to form lumps of vanilla sugar.

  • Set aside to allow the lumps to harden.

  • Pit the cherries carefully from the bottom. I use a small curved dental tool. Make sure the stem stays intact.

  • When the lumps of sugar have hardened, insert them into the cherries where the pits were; set aside.

  • Melt chocolate in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until melted and smooth.

  • Hold cherries by the stem and dip into the chocolate leaving the very top uncovered. Set on waxed paper to dry.

  • Refrigerate overnight to allow the sugar lumps to dissolve.

Christian and Andrea Cooper had made many plans on what they would do when their children were finally out of the house. Now that they were gone their plans had hit a snag. Christian had the chance to start his own company and promised to put their plans in motion as soon as it was off the ground.

Andrea agreed to those terms, but she had no idea how lonely and neglected she would feel while she waited. On a trip to the city in search of something to do she ran into Raymond Reyes, her first love. Reminiscing with Ray brought back a flood of emotions that she found difficult to ignore. Did she make the right decision by marrying Christian after all? Could Ray convince her that this was their second chance and they were meant to be together?

“Ray, Regina said she could tell that you were attracted to me.”

He sighed. “I’m sorry Andrea, but I am attracted to you. Of course I’m not rying to be all obvious, but how can I deny the attraction? You are beautiful, intelligent and a truly nice person, you always have been.


He grabbed her arm and stopped walking. “What would you have me do, Andrea? Do you want me to treat you badly just to hide how I really feel?”

“No, Ray, I don’t want you to do that.”

“Good, because I wasn’t going to. Look, I can’t help the way I feel about you. The moment I held you in my arms again it was like the years just melted away for me. Leaving you was the biggest mistake I ever made and I have been kicking myself for it for the last twenty years.” He dropped her arm and his shoulders slumped. I know you have a different life now and it doesn’t include me like it used to. I will respect the fact that you are married, I just want to be a part of your life…even as just a friend.”

Her heart tightened at the pained look in his eyes, those beautiful brown pools that still shined with the love he has for her.

“Of course, Ray. There will always be a place for you in my heart.”

She pulled him into a hug and together they continued to her car.

Where to buy:

Barnes and Noble
Red Rose Publishing

About Dana:

Dana Littlejohn was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, but has called Indianapolis, IN her home for over ten years. She works a nine to five at a nearby doctor's office while she pursues her dream of writing. Her writing to-do list grows daily. Stop by Dana's website to see what she's doing next . It's a ride you will not soon forget!

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Facebook @ liljohndana
Twitter @ authordanalittlejoh

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