How gorgeous are these guys?
When I saw this basket of hot peppers at the farmers market, I knew I had to have them. The stunning colors were just drawing me in. As they sat in my office all afternoon, it was all I could do not to bite into one. Having bitten into a Habenero in the past, I knew better. But still…
I adore hot food. Any nationality, any ethnicity, bring it. My favorite condiments are hot sauces and hot Giardiniera peppers. I was already thinking of the dishes I could make with these beauties. Salsa (obviously), Jerk Chicken, Thai Curries. The list is endless. Thankfully, I’ve still got my Some Like it Hot cookbook hanging around.
I will be honest and say I didn’t know what was contained in this little basket when I bought it. I knew there were a handful of Habeneros, a few Jalapenos, but past that I had no clue. So a little Internet sleuthing helped determine what was in there as well as their Scoville rating.
The Scoville Heat Scale is used to rate the hotness of chiles. Obviously, the higher the Scoville rating, the hotter the pepper. The heat comes from the compound Capsaicin. And once again, the more concentrated the Capsaicin, the hotter the pepper. The scale starts at 0 – which is your standard bell pepper. Jalapenos clock in around 2,500 – 3,000 Scoville units, Habeneros are around 100,000 – 300,000 Scoville units, Law enforcement grade pepper spray is around 5,000,000 – 5,300,000 Scoville units and pure Capsaicin is 15,000,000 – 16,000,000 Scoville units.
So what’s the hottest pepper?
The hottest recorded pepper (at this time) is the Naga Jolokai, also known as the Ghost Pepper. It is a naturally occuring hybrid that can be found in northeastern India. It rates 855,000 – 1,050,000 on the Scoville scale. Thankfully, I’m pretty sure I don’t have one of these guys.
So what do I have here?
Like I said, a little sleuthing has uncovered the following:
Ok, well at least I THINK that is what I’ve got. So if you know better than I do, please feel free to set me straight!
Next up? Some fiery recipes to use up these little guys. First up is a dish I’ve always wanted to make (well, make right) – Jerk Shrimp.
Ms. Pantry Raid