How can I get used to hot peppers?

biancasrAugust 4, 2007

My hubby loves hot and spicy foods but I'm a wimp! I am new to growing peppers and I have only planted 2 plants that say "garden salsa pepper" and then a habenaro plant, just for him. His co-worker gave us an orange pepper that looked similiar to a Anaheim pepper. I cut it open, removed the seeds, cut a piece off and let him taste it. He said it wasn't too hot. So then I cut a tiny piece off, tasted it and had to spit it out! My whole mouth was on fire and my lips hurt for a good 15 minutes! WHY IS THIS? Am I just a wimp? Why didn't it bother him?

I had cut it up to add to some homemade salsa that we were making in the food processor, but instead of adding it to the big batch, I made him add it to his bowl.

How can I get used to hot peppers? Help! LOL

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ardnek710(z6 stlouis)

Well you need to start low/slow and consistant and work your way up to the hotter stuff.
Find a pepper that you find hot (not unbearable or painful, just hot) and start with that.
Find ways to incorporate spicy peppers into all your foods. Add tiny amounts of milder hot sauces to your food and then you just work your way up. You will be amazed after awhile you find yourself adding a little more and a little more, or that jalepeno just doesn't seem as hot anymore.

Be careful and go slow, you don't want to hurt yourself, and remember some people will always have a natural limitation on how hot they can go. But with a little control and some consistent addition of hot to your foods you should start to build a type of tolerance to the heat.

Good Luck


    Bookmark   August 4, 2007 at 6:37PM
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shelbyguy(z5 IL)

start your tasting from the bottom tip. The heat is in the placental membrane holding the seeds to the pith. The closer you get to the calyx end of a pepper, the hotter it is going to be.

If you've ever tried any Indian food, you may notice that many common dishes are cut with yougurt - dairy cuts the heat. I prefer ice cream, but I like brain freeze as much as I like chile burn...

and you need to build a tolerance. I tend to consume nearly all my peppers before the next harvest - and my heat tolerance goes down because of it. In late spring or early summer, my tolerance is much much less than what it is in, say, late january. so eat more peppers :)

really hot ones give me instantaneous and rapid hiccups, so even though the mouth can tolerate it just fine, the rest of the body might complain it its own way...

    Bookmark   August 4, 2007 at 7:23PM
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HabRob(z7 PA)

It took me 3 years to get to the point that I could bite into a fresh red savina or chocolate Hab right off the plant and not go nuts from the pain. Now I can bite into one and savor the heat, get the endorphin rush and take another bite a few minutes later to keep the heat going.

I got started on spicy food with hot sauces....tobasco was the gateway sauce. I don't really enjoy the vinegar taste now but back then it was the only hot sauce I had been exposed to. From the tobasco I moved up to some of the chipotle sauces. After that I was adding hot pepper flakes to alot of favorites were to eggs(omelets or scrambled) and to soups/stews.

Some people are just hardcore chile-heads right out of the gate....others get there slowly. The best thing to do is go go for sauces that taste good with marginal heat....learn to enjoy the flavor that hot peppers add to foods. If you enjoy that with mild peppers then you'll build a tolerance and want more heat down the line. Sooner or later you'll learn to enjoy the burn and the subsequent endorphin rush. If try to move too fast you'll just turn yourself off from hot/spicy foods altogether.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2007 at 2:37PM
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you can purchase dried hot pepper powder on the internet. I recommend something mild from New Mexico. then add that to your plate of food. sprinkle it on top. This way you can control the heat.

the best flavor and low heat is Chimayo. the oldest true heirloom in america. over 400 years. Phone 505-351-4112 a local in Chimayo who sells chiles. Chimayo from the Casados Farm in Chimayo. 1/3 pound for only $4.50 ( thats over 5 ounces

If you want seeds to grow then tell the sales person and get the flakes with seeds. if you are not growing them then get the powder. You will not be sorry. This is very mild and very high flavor. you will love it.

They also sell mild not chimayo chile powder for a little less but it will have less flavor. Treat yourself to the best. the cost is very low.

If you get the flakes with seeds then just filter out the seeds from the powder in the container. no problem. you only need a few hundred seeds. the germination will be a little low from drying the chiles in the hot sun. but enough will germinate. Then you must save seeds from the plants you grow. these will have close to 100% germination.

If you want a similar heirloom pepper from new mexico with more heat then you can try espanola. I picked my first one this week and it might be a little less hot than a Jalapeno. But hard to tell for sure. but definitely hot. the chimayo is very mild and you will love it.

good luck

Here is a link that might be useful: chimayo

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 9:56PM
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Thank you all! Very good suggestions and I will take them to heart. My hubby must be one those people who naturally can take hot stuff and I will be one who has to work at it very slowly!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2007 at 12:43AM
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hellmans real mayo mixed with a hot pepper of anykind on a good sandwich is not only good tasting but the heat is tamed down .
like the others said work up to it and remember its not all about drinking 20 beer and passing out like a 18 year old...or eating a scotch bonnet and a hab raw .
its about adding flavor and heat to a dish and haveing a good time doing it .
I love soup and to add heat i have a few dried habs in a pepper grinder that i add a turn at a time .
alot of family at xmas like this little grinder as it is easy to controll the heat.
have fun

    Bookmark   August 17, 2007 at 2:49AM
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naturalstuff(Z6 / CT)

I was wondering the same thing after I tasted the Billy Goat Peach! Such a heavy producer and limited abouts of people I can give it away to. So I'm hoping to adjust to the heat of it.

But everytime I try to - my lips go numb and I can't take it.

Water doesn't help but I think pink lemonade does. Need to try that again.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 11:42PM
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shelbyguy(z5 IL)

so numb lips are a bad thing?

and if you're just biting into a raw billy goat, of course its going to be ridiculously hot!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2007 at 1:19AM
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"hellmans real mayo mixed with a hot pepper of anykind on a good sandwich is not only good tasting but the heat is tamed down"

I do this with sour cream. I would start with a quarter of a hab to two cups sour cream. I have two and a half Orange habs in my mix now. You get all the favor without all the heat. You can add whatever you like... garlic, onion, tomatoes, but you start to hide favor of the pepper. I use it on everything... great steak/seafood/ice cream sauce.

JK about the ice cream... broke my addiction to it six months ago and lost fifteen pounds.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 10:04PM
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