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Spicy Food Day
"They have hot peppers in Louisiana.
Little red devils with fire in their skin
and hell in their seeds."
~The Grains of Paradise, James Street (1903–1954)
Spice it up! Championship Chili Cookoff Competitions are taking place all over the US and beyond! The origins of the modern stewed dish known as "chili" are murky, but by the 1920s, chili was a standard menu item on diners and chili parlors were popular throughout the western United States. Traditional chilis were flavoured with vintage green and red chili peppers from Mexico including jalapeños, cayenne and ancho, but the newer chili peppers of today are on another level for hotness! The now infamous Ghost Pepper, unknown in the west until the year 2000 is commonly used in chili recipes but also in recipes for candy, fudge, vodka and more! However, this pepper now ranks only the 8th in the world for heat, and can be found in plant nurseries for vegetable gardens. This formerly frightening pepper trails the fearsomely named Carolina Reaper, Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, t7 pot Douglah, "Butch T" Trinidad Scorpion, Naga Viper, and the newest truly deadly peppers, the "Dragon's Breath Chili" and "Pepper X" ! The Dragon's Breath Chili was an accidentally bred pepper by a gardener in Wales who was breeding for a more attractive plant, and the newest record holder Pepper X was bred by same breeder who originated the Carolina Repeater! These peppers rate 2.5 million and 3.2 million on the Scoville scale, the standard measure of the heat, or pungency, of chili pepper. These peppers are deadly and may have only medical uses as nerve anesthetics in calibrated doses. For comparison, a Bell pepper rates a 0 on the Scoville Heat Unit scale (no heat) , a jalapeño pepper ranges between 2500 - and 10000, and a Scotch bonnet (named for its resemblance to a Scottish tam o' shanter bonnet) or habanero ranges between 100,000 and 350,000! Beware! 🌶️🌶️🌶️
By designer Carol A.L. Martin, this is "a particularly hot tartan for a hot dish."
Chili con carne, sometimes more commonly known as simply "chili", is a spicy stew containing chili peppers, meat (usually beef), and often tomatoes and beans. The chili pepper, which gives the dish its heat, gives the dish its name.
The Scoville scale, created by American Pharmacist Wilbur Scoville in 1912, is a measurement of the pungency (capsaicin concentration) of chili peppers, such as the jalapeño, the ghost pepper, and the world's (current) hottest pepper - the Carolina Reaper.
The Carolina Reaper recently stole the top hot spot from the previous winner, The Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, and tops the list at 2,200,000 SHU (Scoville Heat Units)!
For a list of the world's hottest peppers, and an infographic showing the less fiery peppers, click the chilis.