2019-09-11 11:09:18 UTC
My parents never raised hot peppers, at least on purpose (Hungarian Wax can apparently get hot).
So raising peppers is new to me. Eating and cooking with them is not. I’ve tear gassed myself with habaneros and eaten stuffed habaneros and thought I was going to have a heart attack. At one point I got into the whole macho how hot can you eat it nonsense, but thankfully that was before ghost peppers and reapers and whatever other nonsense is the rage these days.
I have a lot of jalapeños because I like them. But, I notice two major kinds, the ones I am used to that have the classic shape where they are fatter toward the stem, and one that up until now I was unfamiliar with that is longer and skinnier, yet unmistakably, still a jalapeño. I also have habaneros (regretting that now) mad hatters and golden cayenne.
Over time, as much as I like some heat, I value flavor over hotness, and prefer a combination. I have yet to try a mad hatter because I didn’t realize they take 10 years to ripen. I have picked the peppers at various stages. It’s clear they don’t get hot until they get close to being ripe. It’s also clear that the hotness of one pepper cannot reliably predict it’s neighbor either on a different plant or the same plant. Jalapeños can range from not hot at all, to rivaling habaneros for heat. So far golden cayennes have best sweet spot of being really hot but having superior flavor to any of the others.
Given the above, if you are still reading and have experience raising hot peppers, are there ways to cultivate heat or cultivate reduced heat? Or is it all a random grab bag as it appears to me now.