Cafe Sambal Adds to the Spice of Life Thursday Nights

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Add a little spice to your life (and maybe your sex life too) at the new "Indian Nights" dinners taking place every Thursday from 6 to 11 p.m. at Café Sambal at Miami's posh Mandarin Oriental.

Guest chef Jayaseelan Mariadoss will serve a family-style meal made up of dishes from all over the Indian subcontinent (and ingredients imported from there as well). Want some examples? Soft-shell crab pakoras with tandoori shrimp and calamari, Navabi cashew lamb, chicken noorjehani, aloo gobi, and mango and pistachio kulfi. Nan bread and basmati rice too, plus a sitar player channeling Ravi Shankar. Cost is $45 for adults and $22.50 for kids.

So what's all this got to do with putting lead in your pencil? Spices, silly. Indian cuisine is redolent with spices said to kick-start the libido -- garlic, ginger, chilies, asafetida, mustard, aniseed. Just think: all-natural Viagra. And they taste good too.

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Bill Citara