Simpsons Seeds Chilli Tasting

by Matt on August 11, 2010 · 1 comment

in General Information

We all love a chilli, but trying to taste a wide range, and still have your palate in good working, or too sound a tad wordy, ‘functionally objective’. Well, we run tasting sessions at our nursery, and will also be running a small one at the Upton Cheyney Chilli Festival. They start in mid September, and go on for a couple of weeks, they also get hotter as the month goes on, as the Scotch Bonnets and Habanero’s mature later. Prior to our chilli tastings, we have tomato tastings, in which we will add a few chillies, just to liven things up.

Simpsons Seeds ChillibTasting Salsa

Simpsons Seeds Chilli Tasting Salsa

Our system is basically a salsa dip. We buy in quite a few jars of Pasata, along with a box of fresh limes, (we use limes, as they are, according to a cousin who is a PhD in Chemistry, are a most efficient carrier for capcinoids); and many big packets of Kettle chips which prove to be very popular, along with a few litres of milk, which are very important. What is vital is consistency, so we are very precise in execution, sounds ominous.

The limes are squeezed, and the juice is added to the Pasata, in a 10-1 ratio. This is now known as the ‘neutral dip’. Visitors are encouraged to try this dip. This is so they get an idea of the background flavours. To this we add 10grams of chopped chilli. Now we do not remove any of the seeds or more importantly the placental tissue which holds the seeds, along with the greatest amount of heat. We are very careful in slicing away the calyx, with cutting away any of the flesh. The adding of 10 grams to 100grams of dip is very straight forward when we are dealing with a small pod, such as a Nepali Orange, or one of the many Bird peppers, but it can become a headache when dealing with a large podded Cayenne, such as Krimson Lee F1. When we are faced with this problem, we cut into the core, lengthways, and then add strips to the scales until we get to 10 grams. If we are making a larger batch, then everything is multiplied, and so much easier. One import thing to remember is to clean the knife and chopping board used between each variety, so as not to cross contaminate. This would give a false result. Just imagine if a very mild variety, such as Pasilla Bajio, was sliced up straight after a variety as lethal as a 7-Pot or Dorset Naga?

Visitors are advised to go easy, as we may have as many as 30 or 40 varieties. On one occasion we had one man who ignored this, making noises that he could take anything, nothing was too hot for him. After a little while, we noticed he was missing, he was found shortly afterwards, hiding behind some tomato plants with tears streaming down his face, having over done it on some of the Habanero’s we were trialing that year. The fact that he was a lawyer, added greatly to the entertainment.

You find out more about the Simpsons Seeds Chilli Tasting days on their web site www.simpsonsseeds.co.uk

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