Slow Burn

Trinidad Moruga ScorpionOur chili this year at the Hebrew Men’s Poker Association booth is a bit milder than last year but still hotter than anything else I’ve tried so far at the cook-off. The other day I said I like my chili hot but not so hot that I achieve an altered state of consciousness. The next day, Keggan Luskey, another member of the HMPA team, sent me a link to this Time story about the world’s hottest pepper: the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, which clocks in at 1.2 million Scoville units, compared to about 5,000 for a jalapeno. Regarding the psychoactive effects of hot peppers, one expert told Time: “People actually get a crack-like rush. I know the people who will eat the hottest stuff to get this rush, but they’ve got to go through the pain.” That is not the effect we are going for, although Keggan plans to plant the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion in his garden this spring, so maybe we’ll have them in our chili next year. This year we made do with the Ghost Pepper (a.k.a. Naga Bhut Jolokia), which is rated at 855,000 Scoville units, in addition to our usual blend of hot and mild chiles. Come check it out and give us your gold coin.