Pepper doesn't always make meals hot

Most of us want to add hot peppers to our food to spice it a little bit. But how many times have you added pepper and you learned the hard way that it was too hot? Like all spices, pepper is meant to boost the foods flavours, enhance their taste and not to cover up the original flavours. Unfortunately, in most cases, you may end up with a meal that will leave your mouth on fire and conclude that pepper is for heat tolerant people.

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To make a regular edible meal for everyone you need to understand your peppers and enjoy a world of limitless possibilities. There are more solutions to make a friendly meal with peppers other than diluting your dish. If it has happened to you, take your time and pay attention to the type of pepper you have been using. Whether in their natural freshly picked form, powdered or processed form, peppers can offer the balance you are looking for in a meal.

 To begin with, you must understand the Scoville rating of the peppers you are using. A Scoville scale will help you identify the heat levels of your pepper of choice.  The key to making great meals with pepper is starting small. Start with both small portions and also with peppers of low Scoville ratings like cherry peppers, poblano, sweet banana, and sweet bell pepper. In most cases, you will be adding other spices to the meal, and as a starter, you may be adding too many spices at the same time.


A common mistake is usually adding too many and too much of a spice. Regardless of how vital a spice may be to your meal, using too many ruins the meal. Experiment with one type of a hot spice at a time.

 For peppers, you can keep increasing quantities or trying various varieties to achieve the desired flavor and level of heat. A great way to avoid extreme heat is by using different types and measures for different meals.

 For example; for garlic and onion based saute veggies and pasta dishes, add a pinch of red pepper directly to the oil. Next time you can switch the red peppers with jalapeno or poblano. Start by sprinkling some Chile powder on potato chips or spiking the ketchup with a dash of hot sauce. Hot may be fun, but the misconception of spicy food especially those made with pepper is always hot is just but a belief. Pepper does not always make food hot; the food can be just as flavor packed. The bottom line is, there is no one way to make a meal with pepper not too hot yet flavorful.

However, you are doing it wrong if your food loses the intended flavour; it is all about balancing the foods predominant taste. If you are afraid that the meal may not turn out as expected or may not accommodate the needs of people with different tastes, serve the pepper dish on the side. You can make sauces, condiments, and salsas and let everyone decide. Pepper can be fun because it's the only spice with a heat rating ranging from zero to extreme.

Victoria DiohComment