Author Topic: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?  (Read 2500 times)

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Offline DrG

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Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« on: March 15, 2021, 04:26:54 pm »
I have come to terms with my comfort level regarding capsaicin. I am a fan of Sriracha / Tabasco / Texas Pete. I do grow my own hot peppers -



and I always have some hot oil from them handy.



But, I have a few friends who have grown Ghost peppers and now Carolina Reapers. Naturally, they have to give you some. Toxic hot! I went to a Thai restaurant once where the food was so tasty and so hot, it was killing me :) I have long given up on the "manliness" of burning the piss out of your mouth and (other parts). To each their own.

I do, get a kick out of these videos though - a couple of my favorites below.








« Last Edit: March 15, 2021, 04:29:14 pm by DrG »
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Offline Halcyon

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2021, 04:35:09 am »
The hotter the better, but, not just hot for the sake of being hot. It has to have a nice flavour. There are plenty of chilli products that are crazy hot but taste like shit.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2021, 05:14:36 am »
I tend to like pretty hot, but not so hot that it's just pain rather than flavor. Usually the upper end of the stuff not sold as specialty insanely hot is pretty good. I've had pollen allergies most of my life so my sense of smell has not been very good in a long time, combined with normal aging of the senses I find my preference shifts hotter as I get older.
 

Offline twospoons

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2021, 05:24:08 am »
For me the heat should never be the main event. It should be a little kick that enhances everything else.
Whats the point if all you get is the burn? Might as well eat a raw chilli salad.

Good cooking is all about balance.
 
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Offline Halcyon

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2021, 08:47:20 am »
For me the heat should never be the main event. It should be a little kick that enhances everything else.
Whats the point if all you get is the burn? Might as well eat a raw chilli salad.

Good cooking is all about balance.

I agree, however, by putting myself through pain (and the occasional regret the next day), I found my tolerance went up rather quickly. Now, chilli that would make the average person run for the milk adds a nice flavour to dishes (in my opinion). I use chilli like other people use salt, it really brings out the flavour of different ingredients if you can push past some initial pain while you're getting used to more and more heat.
 

Offline Psi

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2021, 08:51:26 am »
Sometimes you want to be in extreme pain.
Sometimes you want to relax and enjoy your meal.
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Offline james_s

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2021, 05:59:27 pm »
I agree, however, by putting myself through pain (and the occasional regret the next day), I found my tolerance went up rather quickly. Now, chilli that would make the average person run for the milk adds a nice flavour to dishes (in my opinion). I use chilli like other people use salt, it really brings out the flavour of different ingredients if you can push past some initial pain while you're getting used to more and more heat.

Kind of sounds like you just burned out a bunch of taste buds and now more heat doesn't bother you. After staring at the sun a while it won't bother you anymore to look at bright lights.
 

Offline tszaboo

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2021, 06:10:06 pm »
It depends on the type. I enjoy paprika, and some chili. Also most onions. Sometimes a little too much is good, it clears up the tubes.

But not some Indian or Chinese spices
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Offline T3sl4co1l

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2021, 06:51:32 pm »
Somewhere around jalapeno to habanero.

And mind, I've had some pretty damn hot jalapenos, they can be quite variable.  Always test first, if it makes your eyes water you picked well. ;D

And not like a shitton of it, I mean in stuff.  What usually passes for "hot salsa" is on the medium side to me.  I can take it hotter, but by say, a few times more, not orders of magnitude more.

Ghost chilies are just too hot, and not nearly flavorful enough, to be worth.  I also find they tend to have a laxative effect, and I mean even in relatively small amounts where the heat is otherwise manageable.

Note there's different capsaicinoids, partly which account for fast/front/back/slow heat, but also which I find acclimate at different rates.  I can make a nice hot chili with habaneros, and barely get through the first or second bowl, but after a few days it's feeling pretty medium.  And that it seems to burn less coming out than going in!  Whereas jalapenos don't seem to acclimate as quickly, and a pot of those nice and hot, seems to last longer in that regard.

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Offline DrG

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2021, 08:49:29 pm »
I have forgotten most of the pharmacology, but, basically capsaicin and similar alkaloids (capsaicinoids) present in the peppers interacts with a receptor (TRVP1) in your mouth (and the other end, and other places including those which are related to nociception). With enough stimulation, you experience desensitization, i.e., the same amount of capsaicin produces less activation at the receptor than it did previously. Whether this is due to down regulation of the receptors or some other mechanism, I don't remember, and am too lazy to go wade through a ton of literature to figure out. The net effect is that, given an equal amount of capsaicin, folks who eat a lot of hot peppers do not "burn" as much as those that do [not].

The position exists, however, that sufficient desensization allows those folks to experience flavor nuances that mild-to-medium folks, like myself, do not experience (because we are in flames :) ). It might be difficult to make a compelling argument either way, but they certainly could have a point.

It is interesting because two people could agree that "heat" should not be the main event for the food - yet for a given dish, for one person it is the "main event" and for the other it is not, and the latter person may be getting some flavors that the former person can not get.

...and then, of course, you can take it to ridiculous levels, which serves only to be entertaining to watch on video...and from a safe distance :)


« Last Edit: March 17, 2021, 12:47:42 am by DrG »
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Offline james_s

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2021, 10:03:31 pm »
I'm reminded of an incident at the lunch table in middle school. One of my... non-genius schoolmates drank an entire bottle of hot sauce on a dare along with what amounted to a few dollars in loose change. I don't remember what the sauce was but I do recall it said "one drop does it" on the bottle. About an hour later he went to the nurse's office and went home sick, apparently he had a pretty rough night.
 

Online Microdoser

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2021, 12:28:29 pm »
I grow various peppers ranging from Jalapeños to Maruga Scorpion/Komodo Dragon/Carolina Reaper.

I find that putting a small Maruga Scorpion in a pot of chilli that will serve 9-10 people gives a good heat. The sort of heat where you can eat a spoon of the chilli without suffering, but you certainly get a good mouthfull of heat.

I like to describe the right sort of heat as one where people welcome it if you serve salsa, guacamole, crème fraîche (I prefer it to soured cream because of the higher fat content), cheese etc on the side to cool things down, but it is possible to eat without those things if you like the heat. Putting sriracha on food is the right sort of heat for a table sauce in my opinion. The rooster brand has it spot on, good flavour and the right amount of heat.

I like to pickle the jalapeños to put into things like fajitas etc.

Too hot is when you don't want to eat the food because it is too hot, and you can't make it bearable even with soured cream etc.
 

Offline DrG

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2021, 02:01:21 pm »
/--/

I like to pickle the jalapeños to put into things like fajitas etc.

/--/

Concur.

I  have a Jalapeño plant or two most seasons. I know pickling is an art and I claim no expertise, but some salt, sugar, vinegar and a bit of garlic....lasts for a very long time. Excellent on sandwiches of all kinds. Very convenient to add to the batch as additional fruit ripens. Threw a couple carrots in this batch.



« Last Edit: March 17, 2021, 02:04:45 pm by DrG »
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Online Microdoser

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2021, 09:23:15 pm »
Nice, the carrots will sweeten them up.

For lactic acid pickling, just make up a 3.5% salt solution (100ml water 3.5g salt, yes I know technically it is a different percentage, but that is how it is described in most pickling literature I have read) then put the sliced [whatever you want to pickle] in it. We get acceptable results from that. The lactic acid bacteria makes it's own 'vinegar'

Or you could just put stuff in some vinegar. I have had good results pickling garlics in homemade apple wine vinegar. They just got better and better over the course of two years.

I currently have about 3 litres of chilli vinegar (3 litres of clear malt vinegar with about 10 maruga scorpions in it) which is awesome on chips (fries). You get a bit of instant heat that fades really quickly leaving a great chilli flavour.

I'll give your recipe a go this autumn, salt, sugar and a little vinegar. I'm always hunting for new recipes.
 

Offline themadhippy

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2021, 09:53:04 pm »
And when youve eaten all the pickled chilies use the left over vinegar  to pickled onions before finally using it for cooking or chucking on chips
 

Offline DrG

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2021, 08:11:06 pm »
We are already in Spring and I am starting to think about what to grow (and in a limited space). The peppers I showed in the first post are ones that I have been growing for, going on the 3rd year.

I keep one pot indoors over the summer and it has started a lot of new growth, including a bloom...


This is an incredibly prolific plant and I prune this one down regularly and I am trying to get a nice woody stem and keep it compact (this is its third year of working for me). I have had issues with mites over the dry winter months and control it with frequent misting with water, intermittently to which a few drops of mild soap has been added. Less of a problem once they are outdoors (those are deceased mites in the pic).


Again, really prolific and pretty. They dry and store nicely.



I would call them medium hot. On a large slice of pizza, I might add a small one (seeds removed - not digestible and I have more than enough). These seeds came from relatives overseas. They don't care for botanical names much, so I get responses like red pepperoncini - that kind of thing.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2021, 08:32:21 pm by DrG »
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Offline DrG

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #16 on: March 24, 2021, 08:24:22 pm »


I love this guy - crazy passionate....am I the only one who wonders what else he might have grown if not hot peppers?  ;)
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Online Microdoser

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2021, 09:08:30 pm »
We are already in Spring and I am starting to think about what to grow (and in a limited space). The peppers I showed in the first post are ones that I have been growing for, going on the 3rd year.

I keep one pot indoors over the summer and it has started a lot of new growth, including a bloom...


This is an incredibly prolific plant and I prune this one down and I am trying to get a nice woody stem and keep it compact. I have had issues with mites over the dry winter months and frequent misting with water, to which a few drops of mild soap has been added. Less of a problem once they are outdoors (those are deceased mites in the pic).


Again, really prolific and pretty. They dry and store nicely.



I would call them medium hot. On a large slice of pizza, I might add a small one (seeds removed - not digestible and I have more than enough). These seeds came from relatives overseas. They don't care for botanical names much, so I get responses like red pepperoncini - that kind of thing.

I've overwintered some plants indoors and had the same bugs on them. Under the scope they look like some sort of aphid, green and a bit like a fat shiny grasshopper. As you say, outdoors they are not such a problem.

I have just planted this year's seeds, some Maruga Scorpion, Armageddon, Komodo Dragon, Thai Green Curry (Prik Chi Fa), jalapeño, cayenne, and Dorest Naga.

I'll be using the Thai Green Curry in stir fry, I'll be drying out the cayenne to turn to powder, I'll be pickling the jalapeños and the hot ones will be given away, used to make vinegar, and frozen to use in curries and chillis throughout the year. Luckily we have an allotment with plenty of space to put out a few plants.
 
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Offline DrG

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2021, 04:25:11 pm »
/--/
Under the scope they look like some sort of aphid, green and a bit like a fat shiny grasshopper. As you say, outdoors they are not such a problem.
/--/

Yes, that is a reasonable description of the little ^&%@$# :)

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Offline wizard69

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2021, 04:10:55 am »
Well I've been able to handle everything handed to me so far but my days of seeking out the really hot stuff is over.

I remember years ago this bar, that I spent way too much money in, would serve chicken wings.   I would ask for them hot and each time I visited the waitress would make them hotter.    It got to the point that they where so hot my mouth and lips would end up numb and I could literally feel the remains burning there way through my innards.   In the end it was a bit painful, if you know what I mean, as that end didn't get exposed to peppers much.   Well hot sauce.

I'm not really sure what the waitress was putting in the sauce so to speak but in the end I think she felt defeated as they didn't get any hotter.   One thing you didn't want to do is get your fingers any where near your eyes, that would put a man down.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2021, 09:11:42 am »
One thing you didn't want to do is get your fingers any where near your eyes, that would put a man down.
Sitting down to pee is also a recommended tactic if you've been handling chilli or chilli-laden food ;-)
 

Offline Robert Smith Eco Warrior

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #21 on: April 22, 2021, 09:33:42 am »
Last year I grew some Naga chilli's, Thai chillis, Ghost chilli's and a couple of others that didn't do so well.
The naga chilli are just silly hot. I am growing a few this year but I don't like handling them and their addition to food has to be fairly precise.
The Thai chillis are hot enough but much easier to handle and work with, partly because they are straight and not a weird wonky lump to try to cut up. They have plenty of heat but are easier to add to a meal and get the taste about right.
The ghost chilli's were somewhere in between but they didn't grow so well.

 
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Offline vidarr

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #22 on: April 26, 2021, 02:22:38 pm »
I can eat very, very spicy hot and it took years to get here, but I like it best where the taste of the pepper isn't destroyed by the power of the capsaicin..
But that really has to do with your level of heat tolerance. I backed down from higher levels because it kills the flavor of everything else.
I try to eat it everyday because the capsaicin is good for your joints.

For health I eat every day:
Capsaicin
Garlic
Olive Oil
Turmeric (this is the most important)


 

Offline vidarr

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #23 on: April 26, 2021, 02:25:54 pm »

[/quote]
Sitting down to pee is also a recommended tactic if you've been handling chilli or chilli-laden food ;-)
[/quote]

Cannot be said enough.
 

Offline tkamiya

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Re: Where do you stand with heat (how hot is too hot)?
« Reply #24 on: April 26, 2021, 07:42:40 pm »
Being a big fan of AUTHENTIC Chinese and Korean cooking, I like my food hot.  But I prefer dry, and flavorless heat.  I'm not a fan of Tabasco (too vinegary) and most of what's available at supermarket.  Degree of heat depends but hot enough to have a kick, and mild enough to still have the taste of ingredients come though.

Too hot is when my tongue starts to go numb and taste nothing, or when my stomach leaks, which ever comes first.
 


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