I was checking on my garden today and saw that my habanero peppers were doing incredibly well. There are about 40 or so on the plant and they are now starting to turn that wonderful orange color that all pepper heads can equate with that wonderful little burn the habanero can give. I started thinking about this and I realized when I was a child, the habanero was considered the hottest pepper in the world. Now we know that is not true. With peppers like the butch t, the trinidad scorpion, and the ever famous ghost pepper, it now seems that the once reliable habanero has been relegated to the back of the shelf. That is a shame because the habanero is one of those peppers that gives the perfect amount of heat to any dish; not to mention the wonderful hot sauce that you can make with it.
We seem to be inundated with all of these pepper challenges which I’m sure you have seen all over Youtube. Somebody with either an overabundance of courage or an under abundance of brain cells bites into one of these super hot peppers and then tries to describe just how it feels. In reality, no words are really necessary, because the bright red color in ones face and sweat streaming from every pour in their body do all the talking. I have tasted these super hot peppers and they are a truly, extremely, otherworldly kind of HOT. I can’t say I don’t love these peppers because I do. In fact I am growing some in my garden, but I will use them to cook with, spice up a chili dish, or do a super hot spicy peanut chicken recipe. This, however, does not mean they are my favorites. I do know that I do not ever intend on eating one of these super hot peppers raw ever again.
With all the fuss being made over the heat of these super hot peppers I think we are neglecting a crucial aspect of all peppers and that is flavor. This is where peppers like the habanero shine. Not only do they have a nice little kick of their own but the flavor they add to any dish is truly sublime. I am going to make it a point to use all of my habanero peppers this season and use them the way they so richly deserve. I would suggest you do the same because nothing beats a good spicy pepper. Do the super hot peppers still hold a place in my heart? Of course they do. But I am not going to forget about the ever versatile pepper known as the habanero. Versatility is the one thing this pepper has over most other peppers with the exception of the jalapeno. I do know the jalapeno is not the hottest pepper out there but that is for another article. For now, I suggest you find a place for the habanero in your pantry. You won’t be disappointed!