Chile Peppers Recipes
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Naga Jolokia Chile Pepper

Naga Jolokia Chile Pepper Stats

Name: Naga Jolokia
Pronunciation: Nah-gah Jo-Loh-kee-ah
Length: 2 - 4"
Width: 1"
Scientific Name: Capsicum chinense
Other Names: bhut jolokia
Scoville Range: 850,000 - 1,000,000

Naga Jolokia Chile Pepper Origin and History

Welcome to the world's hottest chili pepper, according to many people. The Naga Jolokia pepper is believed to have originated in the Assam region of northeast India. It is actually a hybrid pepper, combining peppers from regions of India and Bangladesh and was originally called "Bhot," for the Bhotiya region, or "Naga," for the Nagaland hills, both believed to be places of origin for the pepper. "Jolokia" is simply the Assamese word for the Capsicum pepper. It has been called the ‘ghost pepper' by members of the United States media because a claim that "bhut" means ghost, which has been refuted by the Indian researchers from Nagaland University.

This pepper grows in the Indian states of Nagaland, Manipur, and Assam, as well as the Sylhet region of Bangladesh. This interspecific species of pepper belongs predominantly to the capsicum chinense family, but also contains some genetic markers of the capsicum frutescens.

The Guinness World Records certified the Naga Jolokia as the hottest chili pepper in the world. This lasted until 2010 when it was replaced by the Naga Viper, whose "average peak" is more than 300,000 points higher than an average Naga Jolokia. Then in February 2011 the Infinity chili took the record. Of course, the exact hotness of peppers is very controversial and proponents for all three peppers argue about which one is truly the hottest.

Naga Jolokia Chile Pepper Description

Like most chili peppers, the Naga Jolokia pepper is initially light green then ripens to orange or red. The redder and riper the pepper, the hotter it is. The pepper plant itself grows about 3 feet tall and can produce over 100 peppers in its lifetime. Since the Naga Jolokia hasn't been selectively breed it results in a lot of variety in plant and pepper size, as well at hotness.

Bhut Jolokia have a very characteristic claw shape and rough, uneven skin which is pretty unique among peppers. The skin is also very thin.

Naga Jolokia Chile Pepper How to Serve or Use

As a food, the Naga Jolokia has limited uses besides adding pure heat to dishes. With its extreme heat a little goes a long way in food. It's commonly made into hot sauces where one dash is all that is needed to season a meal.

The Naga Jolokia is often used to help relieve stomach aches and indigestion through traditional homeopathic remedies. They are also used in smoke bombs or smeared on fences to keep out wild elephants, and would presumably do the same for deer or moose.

India's Defense Research and Development Organization is working on ways to incorporate it into various non-lethal weapons such as smoke grenades and pepper spray.

Image(s) provided by: wstryder | saucysalad | armyofgnomes

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