Chilli harvest

On Sunday, I harvested the chilli that we have growing in the conservatory. There were sufficient Ghost chilli ready to be harvested. This is particularly important as the last batch we had blended (with some of the less hot chilli) had run out. Finally there was enough Ghost chilli to blend with the garlic, lemon juice and salt, without needing the less hot chilli to bulk it up – mainly to maximise the heat.

Ghost chilli nearly ripe for harvest
Ghost chilli some now ripe for harvest
Ripe Ghost chilli
Ghost chilli blend – should last for a while
Normal chilli which was also harvested today

The Ghost chilli was blended with my Magic Bullet blender until it was even and smooth. Just opening the blender released a strong whiff of the heat in the blend; it was enough to start me coughing and sneeze.

But as the saying goes, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. No point saying the chilli is >1,000,000 Scovilles hot, if it does not have that impact. And I have to say my wife is definitely convinced that this chilli is HOT!!! So much so that she was very quick to bring out the milk from the fridge to quench the heat.

BTW, a little information about the Scoville scale for rating how hot chilli is. It is the degree of dilution of the pepper extract with water which is required until there is ‘no heat’ observed. But nowadays, the rating is done using chromatography to look at how much of the capsaicin is present in each chilli.

As capsaicin is not soluble in water, but much better in fat, the recommendation is to drink milk to quench the fire from the chilli (and using milk to wash your hands after handling chilli). Apparently an alcoholic drink will also help to extinguish the ‘fire’ better as well.

The ‘fire’ from the chilli results in the body releasing endorphins, which are chemicals the body releases for pain relief and makes you feel good; apparently this is also released when you exercise, which is probably why exercising also makes you feel good.

BTW, we were having the chilli with the food during dinner. The heat was very intense, so I needed something to quench it. I resorted to eating some ice cream to quench the heat. Then my wife had a brilliant idea – why not eat the ice cream with our Ghost chilli blend.

Dollop of ghost chilli on the Haagen Dazs Bailey's ice cream
Dollop of ghost chilli on the Haagen Dazs Bailey’s ice cream

The sensation was very interesting – combining both heat of the chilli and the cold of the ice cream. Very interesting and actually rather pleasant. The ice cream did not dampen the heat of the chilli, as this could be felt the instant it went into the mouth. There was a gush of heat rushing up into my nose (similar to what happens when ingesting wasabi with Japanese sushi). Definitely worth trying again (my wife did have quite a few scoops).

Now it has been reported over the years that eating chilli can have numerous health benefits (substantiated by studies):

1) Increased energy expenditure

2) Curb appetite for certain foods

3) Is rich in certain vitamins e.g. vitamin C

4) It contains capsaicin which can aid in killing cancer cells (research done on prostatic, lung and pancreatic cancer)

5) Supposedly reduces ‘bad’ LDL-cholesterol

BTW, if you are having difficulties making the big business transaction in the toilet, try some of this Ghost chilli as a remedy; just make sure you can get to the toilet in time. Also do be aware that it was hot when you ate it, and it will be hot when it comes out.