Friday, November 03, 2006

Chilli heat

I try to test the commonly repeated advice that cookery writers give. But the assertion that the seeds are the hottest components of chillis is one that I have repeated unquestioningly, never suspecting that I should doubt it until I read The Book of General Ignorance. The hottest part of a chilli, the book says, is not the seeds: it is the white membrane to which the seeds are attached.

I did test this assertion. I deseeded a pimento -- a conical chilli. I put a few seeds into my mouth: a mild tingle. I tasted the membrane: blimey. It's a good thing that I didn't try this out on a Scotch bonnet.

The heat of chillis is unpredictable. The last pimentos I bought had a pleasant kick. Without its seed and membrane, this one had no heat at all.

I chopped a couple of pimentos and stirred them -- along with some crushed garlic, pepper and a little salt -- into a pot of Greek yoghurt. We ate this mixture with the grilled aubergines.


Susan Hill said...

Garlic. Puke.

Ms Baroque said...

oh YUM.