types in our program:
- sweet chili sauce
- loempia or spring roll sauce
- hot chili or Sri Racha sauce
Chilies were first domesticated in Mexico probably thousands of years ago. It is generally believed that Columbus introduced the fruit to the Europeans in 1493. It was wrongly named a pepper, after the known Piper nigrum L. genus, black pepper. However, the New World pepper was properly a Capsicum, of the Solanaceae or nightshade family.Some other relatives include tomatoes, potatoes, and eggplant.
Called by many names, pepper, chili, chile, chilli, Aji ( in the Americas), and Capsicum chile, there are many varieties of Capsicum. Each has its own devotees and prevails in ethnic cuisines.
By 1650 Portugese and Spanish conquistadores had spread them all over the world and were adopted into the cuisines of most of the tropical countries, maybe because they serve as cooling agents in a hot climate. The capsaicin contained in the chili�s invigorates the bloodstream by dilating the capillaries. This increases the flow of blood and perspiration which cools you off while your mouth is on fire.
Capsaicin has an antibacterial effect, so food cooked with chiles keeps for longer without spoiling.
The heat of the chili comes from the oil called capsaicin which is present in the chili. It is found mostly in the seeds and the "ribs" of chili peppers. Capsaicin acts on the same nerves - found in the tongue and the skin - that gives us a sensation of heat. It releases a chemical called "substance P" which stimulates chemoreceptor nerve endings in the skin, especially the mucous membranes. The body reacts by producing chemicals called endorphines - and these act on brain cells as analgesics, in the same way that opium-derived drug morphine does telling it you are eating something hot. As a result, you feel good. Psychologists suggest that eating chiles is like riding a roller coaster, in which extreme sensations like pain and fear are enjoyed.
There is no evidence that eating too much chilli is unhealthy, or that it causes ulcers. In fact capsaicin is used in anti-inflammatory creams to treat ailments like arthritis and shingles.
Milk products cool off the burning sensation of Capsaicin because casein, a protein, breaks the bond between the pain receptors and the Capsaicin. Particularly fermented milk products such as yogurt and sour cream seem working. Cheeses are also helpful
Drinking water is of no use, as capsaicin is not soluble in water so this spreads the oils in the mouth. This exposes more tissue to the capsaicin and can intensify the burning sensation.
Bread products can also bring relief; presumably they absorb some of the oil. Beer is also reported to help somewhat, but not other carbonated drinks such as soda.
The piquancy or pungency of chilli hotness is measured in Scoville Heat Units (SHU)indicating the amount of capsaicin present. This test was developed back in 1912 by Wilbur L. Scoville using a human tasting panel. Values go from 0 ( sweet or bell pepper) till 16 mln for pure capsaicin and Dihydrocapsaicin.
The Red savina pepper, one of the hottest chilis, is rated at 350,000-580,000 SHU. Only the Naga Jolokia is with a reported 855,000 SHU hotter.
In Scoville's method, a solution of the pepper extract is diluted in sugar syrup until the "heat" is no longer detectable to a panel of (usually five) tasters; the degree of dilution gives its measure on the Scoville scale
The Scoville scale is still in use although the human panel has been replaced by a high-pressure liquid chromatography machine.