For 30 seconds, the fruity flavor will have you savoring these sweet devils, but watch out; they bite! This sweet and spicy devil pushes 1.12 million SHUs and even has a warning in large block letters on the packaging: “Warning! Do not touch without gloves. Skin irritant. Avoid contact with eyes. Wash hands thoroughly after preparation to avoid irritation.” With a warning like that, one wonders if it ought to be put into the mouth and ingested.
The Bedfordshire Super Naga Chili is the hottest pepper commercially grown in the UK. This little, red devil is produced by Salvatore Genovese of Blunham, Bedfordshire, the same man who produced the notorious Bhut Jolokia/Ghost Pepper that tipped the Scoville scales at just over 1 million SHUs in 2011.
Use With Caution
Because of the extremely high concentration of capsaicin in the Bedfordshire Super Naga Chili, skin irritation is very likely. Most of the capsaicin is found in the oils, which are stronger in the seeds and membranes of the peppers. Here are a few suggestions for handling these peppers:
- Carefully removing the seeds and membranes can help dilute the intensity if you’re not used to it.
- Make certain that you are using gloves when you handle or cut into these fiery beasts and avoid any kind of contact with the skin and especially your eyes and other sensitive membranes.
- It is also a pretty good idea to keep some milk or other dairy product handy for the first moment that you bite into them.
- Finally, build up a tolerance to hot peppers before taking on a Bedfordshire Super Naga Chili which is more than 100 times hotter than a Jalapeño.
England’s Love of Chili Peppers
In the past decade the market for chilies in England has sky-rocketed and the demand for Scoville busting peppers seems to have become an obsession. For the English, chilies have become like fine wine. Not only do they love the spicy challenge that chilies add to the palate, but they enjoy the unique flavors as well. The influence of chilies in English cuisine comes from Indian and Caribbean cuisines. As the demand has risen, more and more producers in England are beginning to grow chilies locally and English supermarkets are beginning to stock their homegrown peppers.
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