Tepin Peppers Redux
My report on Tepin peppers here at HSB has received quite a bit of attention in the global community. Some german blogger even got a hold of it, not to mention Melissa De Leon writing for Global Voices. Melissa, who runs CookingDiva.net, challenged me (in so many words) that the Tepin, or Pequin, pepper was definitely hotter than the Habanero, and that I should try her Nicaraguan Insanity Peppers. Ok, so she didn’t say “Insanity,” but the sentiment was implied.
So I took the bait. Never once did I really think that Melissa, who lives and works in Panama, would be able to get produce through U.S. Customs. Then one day, I received an email from her stating that she had been to “the farm” and would be vacuum-sealing a pack of peppers for me straight away. Ha ha, I thought. It’ll never get here.
Then one day, a Fedex envelope shows up at my doorstep oozing with vibrations of fire. I thought, “Oh, God. This is really gonna happen, isn’t it?” My mind had visions of that Simpsons episode where Homer trips out on too many Guatemalan Chile Peppers. My package, which included a hand-written letter, looked like this:
The package included 2 vacuum-sealed packs: one was very ripe peppers which Melissa suggested I not eat and save for planting, and the ready-to-eat green pellets of fire.
I received this package on the day of the Rose Bowl, where my Texas Longhorns became national champions after putting the hurt on an arrogant USC team. TheWife and I were recording an episode of the Men in Aprons Show and I decided to try the pepper live while recording. She took some photos of me in my progression from happiness to pain while I horked and coughed and spat out the loads of saliva in my mouth.
The official judgment on Melissa’s Nicaraguan Insanity Peppers is that they are hotter than the previous peppers that reside in my freezer. These things are hot, hot, hot. The same effect was noticed about them, as they only burned the places in my mouth where the pepper and juice touched. This was mainly my tongue. What amazed me was how much the pepper made my saliva glands overproduce. Every couple of minutes, I’d have to spit in the sink to empty my mouth of the pool of spit that had built up. There was NO way I was swallowing that saliva with all the pepper juice. The bum-hole must be protected.
In the end, I will say that the Tepin peppers rival or surpass the Habanero in terms of pure Scoville Units. The Habs, however, still have that ability to completely fill up your mouth with fire and not let go. Props to Melissa De Leon for the goods, and the soil of Nicaragua for making some mean-ass peppers.