Wednesday, April 13, 2011

She's the hottest of them all...

Some brave Australians have created a scorching chilli that's too hot to handle without protective gear.

IT'S HARD TO IMAGINE, but when chillies first arrived in Europe with Christopher Columbus nobody knew what to do with them. The Spanish and Portuguese grew the fruit in their African colonies and from there it was introduced to Portugal's colony at Goa, India before spreading into Southeast Asia, China, and Korea.

Biochemical food expert Professor Barbara Santich from the University of Adelaide is not surprised that chillies were readily adopted in those locales.

"Remember that pepper grows there," she says. "They'd breed on great big trees with black peppercorns. People were used to the hotness and the spiciness of pepper and peppercorns." {Read on}

Use of chillies has exploded in countries like Australia in recent times, due to the culinary influence of the Asian diaspora, and a NSW Central Coast business The Chilli Factory has decided to go one step further to harvest the hottest chilli ever known.