To Chilli or Not – 7 Facts You Didn’t Know About The Chilli!

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One of the key spices in Indian cooking, red chilli powder finds space in almost all curries and dishes. Made from fresh ground chillies, red chilli powder is great for making either a wet spice paste, marinating food or for tempering with aromatics and herbs.

Found in different parts of the world, chilli can range from being mildly sweet like the Hungarian chilli to being extremely hot like the Indian Ghost chilli. Not just red, chillies can be found in colours such as green and yellow. If you’re confused whether the chilli you’re buying is hot or not, remember this thumb rule – the smaller the chilli is, the hotter it is!

But that’s not all. Here are some super cool facts about chilli that we’re sure you didn’t know.

  1. Till recently, the hottest chilli in the world was Bhut Jolokia that originates in Assam, India. It is 400 times hotter than Tobasco sauce! The record was broken by the Carolina Reaper, measuring almost 2.2 million on the Scoville Scale.
  2. There are two museums in Hungary that are dedicated to Paprika. Both the museums are also working production plants. Two annual paprika festivals are also held in Hungary – one in Kalocsa and the other in Szeged.
  3. The heat of any chilli pepper is measured on a Scoville scale. For eg., Jalapeno measure about 2500-5000 on Scoville scale while Bhut Jolokia or the ‘Ghost chilli’ measures over a million on it.
  4. African farmers attach chillies to fences to keep elephants away from their crops. Elephants hate the smell of chillies.
  5. The world record for eating Bhut Jolokia Chillies in two minutes is 121.90 grams and is held by Kevin Strahle (USA).
  6. Chilli peppers help burn calories by raising the body’s core temperature during digestion – a spicy way to reduce weight!
  7. Chilli peppers release feel-good endorphins and can also alleviate sore muscles and tame arthritis.

It’s not uncommon to find chilli being used for cooking savoury items throughout the world. However, you’d be surprised to know that Hungarian chilli that takes seven months from seed planting to harvesting, retains sugar in the spice. That’s why the Hungarian paprika is sweet enough to be used in desserts. Try the Hungarian Pepper Cake the next time you visit the country!

While that’s not all there is to know about the mighty chilli pepper, it is enough to suffice that a world without the spicy, hot chilli will be quite a bland one. If you love eating spicy food, try the famous curries at Box8 that are lip-smacking good and just the right amount of spicy!

If you know any more crazy and interesting facts about chillies, do drop in a comment and let us know. Say Chilli! 🙂