The Bhut Jolokia or Ghost Pepper is a super hot pepper; in fact, it’s one of the spiciest! If you’re interested in knowing more about this extremely hot vegetable, read on!
The Scoville scale measures how hot peppers are, and the ghost pepper often has over 1 Million Scoville Heat Units. Wow!
Everything About The Ghost Pepper (Bhut Jolokia)
The Scoville Heat Units for the ghost pepper is 855,000 – 1,041,427 SHU. This means it was awarded by the Guinness World Records in 2006 for being the World’s Hottest of All Spices. Not only that, but the awards board gave it a distinction in hotness!
The ghost pepper successfully held the hottest pepper title given by the Guinness Book of World Records from 2007 to 2010.
The ripest Bhut Jolokia is 2.5 to 3.3 inches in length. They’re often red. However, there are also orange, white, purple, yellow, and brown colored subspecies. The peppers have easy-to-tear, super thin, and dented skin, making them easy to chop.
History Of The Ghost Pepper (Bhut Jolokia)
Initially, the ghost pepper came from Northern India a long time ago. However, Western society first cultivated them since the beginning of this century. As a result, the ghost pepper grows naturally, mainly in Bangladesh and northeastern India.
Occasionally, the ghost pepper grows in Sri Lanka. The word “bhut” means ghost in the Assam language. The Bhutias people use this word to describe this pepper, maybe because the hotness is super sneaky and shocks you suddenly with how much heat there is.
In addition, there are other names, including Bih Jolokia, Raja Mircha, Borbih Jolokia, Ghost Chili, Raja chili, and Naga Jolokia. To most in the western world, the bhut jolokia is known as the ghost pepper.
The Bhut Jolokia is no match for the famous jalapeno pepper, as the ghost pepper is 416 times hotter. On average, the hottest ghost pepper is approximately 5,000 on the Scoville Scale.
The standard jalapeno pepper is 208 times cooler than the Bhut Jolokia, which means the ghost pepper isn’t made for the heat-adverse.
Ghost Pepper Heat And Taste
The ghost pepper has a super sweet, fruity, and strong chili flavor. As the word “ghost” is in the name, it’s known for taking 20-45 seconds for the heat to really kick in. And once the heat takes full effect, you will definitely know!
The pepper causes shortness of breath, sweating, hiccups, and watery eyes. These sensations generally get stronger for approximately 15 minutes. Then, the heat goes away after about 30 to 40 minutes.
We love eating them because they’re not biting the scorpion pepper and have a lovely fruity edge. Rather than stinging, the ghost pepper has a blossoming heat, which is delicious if you’re able to eat food this spicy.
If you’re not into extreme spiciness, there are a few things you can do to reduce the heat. First, take out the ghost pepper’s innards; however, it will pack a punch, a super hot vegetable.
In every hot pepper is capsaicin, a chemical that brings the heat. Unfortunately, capsaicin is absorbed into the flesh, meaning the heat will linger once you’ve eaten it. To reduce the heat, introduce dairy to the meal or use tiny ghost pepper.
Uses For Ghost Pepper
Bhut jolokia is excellent for creating hot and spicy sauces. This is because it’s fruity and has an intense heat that is great for adding as a condiment to any meal that needs a bit of spiciness. In addition, you can chop and fry the pepper into stews, large meals, or chili pots.
To preserve the ghost pepper, you can dehydrate it into chili flakes or powders. This would make a brilliant addition to any spice collection, allowing you to add a tiny amount of heat to any meal.
Ghost Pepper Weight
The standard ghost pepper is approximately ⅓ of an ounce. Obviously, the more space you use, the hotter the taste.
In Bangladesh and India, the bhut jolokia is often a typical household. The ghost pepper is a side dish served beside Indian main meals. And the uses for this hot pepper don’t end there!
In these countries, the ghost pepper is eaten for stomach pain. It’s a homeopathic remedy that is said to help cool people down in the height of summer. This is because the ghost pepper causes the person who eats it to sweat loads.
Sweating causes people to cool down, decreasing their body temperature and helping overheated humans cope with hot Indian summers.
The ghost pepper has even been used for violence. For example, locals in Northeastern India have elephant problems, where the majestic creatures cause property damage.
So these people put the pepper juices on their fences. This helps prevent the elephants from trampling on them and eating their crops.
You might be surprised to know that people have made smoke bombs using ghost peppers.
Can You Die From Eating Ghost Peppers?
Yes. However, you can only die if you eat ghost peppers in super large amounts. It’s important to note that you’ll probably only lose your life by ingesting a lot of these chili peppers. The Chile Pepper Institute has tested how dangerous ghost peppers are when ingested in varying doses.
Dr. Paul Bosland found in a study while working at the Chile Pepper Institute, you could die if you gobble many ghost peppers. Dr. Bosland stated that “A research study in 1980 calculated that 3 pounds of extreme chilies in powder form eaten all at once could kill a 150-pound person.”
Dr. Bosland went on to tell LiveScience that, “However, one’s body would react sooner and not allow it to happen.” Your body could be triggered into causing a heart attack or seizure. Your body could die as a reaction to you eating the ghost pepper.
Thankfully, if you tried to eat 3 pounds of chili powder, you’d seriously struggle to ingest it. As this is a considerable amount, you’d find it super difficult and even impossible to consume chili powder. The equivalent to 3 pounds of chili powder is 12 pounds of ghost peppers.
Despite the health risks of eating peppers aplenty in a short sitting, consuming a few can be beneficial.
Health Benefits Of Eating Ghost Peppers
Every chili pepper contains plenty of vitamin C, which helps healthy development, the body to repair damaged tissue, and aid growth. Having enough vitamin C in your diet is excellent for keeping the immune system working well.
And, this healthy vitamin helps your body absorb iron well and maintain teeth, bones, and cartilage.
Chili peppers are great for your heart, helping your circulatory system function well. The capsaicin compounds in ghost peppers that give you that hot taste is brilliant for your health. These spicy vegetables also contain loads of Vitamin B6, which helps your metabolism work properly.
There’s copper aplenty in chili peppers, which is excellent for those who eat a mainly western diet. Unfortunately, most western meals are lacking in sufficient copper.
Copper maintains healthy neurons and keeps bones strong. As the ghost pepper is a red chili, it’s got beta carotene aplenty. Once consumed, your body transforms the beta carotene into Vitamin A.
Chili peppers have Vitamin K1, which helps your kidneys function well and stops your blood from clotting. In addition, the ghost pepper contains potassium, which some studies show rescues the heart disease risk when you ingest a lot.
Potassium is a super healthy element that helps your body run smoothly.
And the benefits don’t end there! Capsanthin is in red ghost peppers and is an antioxidant. In fact, some people have found that capsanthin may help those battling cancer.
In yellow ghost peppers, there’s violaxanthin. This component is a carotenoid antioxidant, helping to keep your body toxin-free.
In green chili peppers, there’s lutein, which has been scientifically proven to help your eyes stay healthy. Another antioxidant in ghost peppers is sinapic acid, which helps boost your body. In addition, ferulic acid might be a positive boost for those with wholly incurable diseases.
As the ghost pepper has capsaicin, it’s beneficial for relieving people of pain. That is once you’ve gotten over the spicy kick that will stay in your mouth for at least 30 minutes! These peppers can relieve acid reflux and heartburn while desensitizing you from other forms of pain.
How To Grow Ghost Peppers
It can be super hard to grow ghost peppers in the western world, as these plants love heat and humidity. As they originate from India, they love a warm climate.
If you want to grow ghost peppers in a cold place, it’s best to have a greenhouse that allows you to bring in humidity. Being able to control the temperature is vital.
To plant the ghost peppers, make sure you put each seed approximately 19 to 24 inches away from one another. Ideally, plant them in a spot with lots of sunlight and make sure the soil surrounding them is warm.
Usually, at approximately 35 days, the seeds will germinate. After being well looked after, they typically mature at 100 days in the ground. Once fully grown, the ghost pepper plants can be between 24 to 28 inches high. The plants are usually pretty productive, too!
The peppers are typically 2 to 3 inches long, giving you plenty to eat if all goes well.
Take Care When Handling Ghost Peppers
There are a few essential things to remember when using ghost peppers. First, wear gloves when chopping or even simply holding these chili peppers for safety.
This is the same for whether you are touching dried or raw peppers. You have to wear gloves because the ghost pepper’s oils can sink into your flesh, burning you.
In addition, you must prepare the ghost peppers in a well-ventilated space. This is because the ghost pepper gives off hot fumes that can damage your eyes and skin. For belt and braces safety, open the windows while you’re preparing the ghost peppers. Turn on a fan to circulate the air.
Wearing goggles and a mask will stop any surprise ghost pepper liquid from squirting into your eye/face when chopping them. The fumes can damage your skin, so it’s important not to work with these chili peppers if you have cuts in your flesh.
How To Stop The Chilis From Burning You
If you’ve eaten some ghost pepper and find that you can’t handle the heat, we’ve got you covered. There are several different things you can do to chill your taste buds. First, after ingesting the peppers, eat ice cream, milk, yogurt, or any other dairy product to calm your system.
The casein in dairy products works against the spicy chemical capsaicin in the ghost peppers. This happens because the casein takes the capsaicin off the skin’s receptor site.
Sugar can help counteract the punch from chili peppers, too. By eating sweets after an unbearable ghost pepper, you can soak up the chili oil, which soothes the burning sensation.
If your skin is burning because you’ve got ghost pepper on it, submerge your skin in a dairy product. Milk works well. If you get the chili into your eyes, please only use saline or water.
The best way to stop chilis from hurting you is by taking preventive measures before handling the ghost peppers. Use gloves!