Bhut Jolokia!

Anyone who is a true furnace face will remember that name. It is the new hottest chili pepper on the planet.

Bhut Jolokia comes in at 1,001,304 Scoville heat units. That's nearly twice as hot as Red Savina, the variety it replaces as the hottest. By comparison, a New Mexico green chili contains about 1,500 Scoville units; an average jalapeno measures at about 10,000.

The Guinness Book of Records agrees that Paul Bosland, a regents professor at New Mexico State University, has discovered the world's hottest chili pepper. The Bhut Jolokia is a naturally occurring hybrid native to the Assam region of northeastern India.

In it's dried form, photo right, it may have as many as 1 million Scoville heat units.

The name translates as ghost chili, Bosland said.

"We're not sure why they call it that, but I think it's because the chili is so hot, you give up the ghost when you eat it," he said.

You can get seeds for this horrifyingly hot pepper at the here at the NMSU College of Agriculture and Home Economics, where they also supply the answer to the burning question: How do you get the burning sensation to stop after consuming chile peppers?

Answer? The best way to ease the burning sensation is to drink milk, or eat yogurt or any other dairy product. A substance found in dairy products known as casein, helps to disrupt the reaction. This substance, which is a lipophilic phosphoprotein, acts like a detergent and literally strips capsaicin from its receptor binding site. If you get the oil on your skin, you may want to rub it with rubbing alcohol first, then soak in milk, this seems to alleviate the burning. If you get it in your eyes, the only thing you can do is repeatedly rinse with water or saline. Be very careful when handling hot chiles, especially pod types like habanero as there are reports of these chiles actually blistering the skin. Gloves are recommended when handling or peeling any types of hot chile.

*a measure of hotness for a chili


JD Rhoades said...

Maybe I'm just getting old, but I no longer desire chili that can cause actual physical damage when ingested.

David Terrenoire said...

I really like heat, but I'm with Dusty. I don't equate pain with pleasure.

Oh, except for the whips and clamps. But that doesn't involve chili.

Not usually.

Anonymous said...

I like it hot and spicy!!!

Anonymous said...

I read this out loud. My husband's eyes lit up. I told him he is not allowed to grow any on the boat, asbestos pot or not--it might set fire to something just sitting there.

thechileman said...

Its bangladeshi cousin the Naga Morich is just as hot. Eating one is like thrusting a red hot poker up your nose - great fun!!!!

You can find out all about the worlds hottest chiles (Bhut Jolokia & Naga Morich here)


Click on the hottest peppers on the plant icon)


Unknown said...

I have alot of Bhut Jolokia and Bih Jolokia dried pods, this is a hot chilli but, the heat is like opening a furnace door and then it is gone in afew hours. I am growing the Bhut and Bih Jolokia to see if they are both the same or diferent. I sell both the seeds and am hoping there are enough differences to sell them both seperatley. The more people who grow the two the better and then we can get a true view as to the differences.