Thursday, November 11, 2010

Saving some heat

3 hot pepper stories from market

1.A group of students on a class trip stopped to admire our hot peppers. One lad wanting to impress his friends, asked to buy 1 pepper to eat. He was warned of their extreme heat, and possible consequences but was not deterred. He made his purchase and took a bite. A short time later he was rolling on the ground crying. Security came, followed shortly by the paramedics. He made an impression all right, but not the one he wanted.

2."Are your peppers really hot?" asked the customer. He chewed one thoughtfully, allowing that there was some heat - but not a lot. Then beads of perspiration appeared on his bald head and he admitted they were indeed quite hot and promptly made a purchase.

3.A homeless man who regularly declined our offers of sweet & delicious fruit, asked if he could perhaps have some hot peppers instead - and then returned each week for more.

I love growing hot peppers - but not so much eating them!
However, many people love eating them!
Shortly after market begins in spring, customers start asking when the hot peppers will be ready.

Peppers require a long, hot growing season in order to mature and have heat. For the past few seasons I have grown them in the hoophouse to ensure I get a good crop regardless of the weather outside.

This year they grew well. We began harvesting in mid-August and were still picking when markets ended in late October. Plenty of time for the chili-heads to get their fix & fill! 
We grew more than 20 varieties of hot peppers - many different shapes, sizes, colours and degrees of hotness. There were early jalapenos & jalapenos, belizean heat, fish, chile grande, orchid, golden hot, baccio di satano, bulgarian carrot, black hungarian, caribbean red, habanero ... to name a few.
About the only ones we ourselves ate were some fairly mild red jalapenos - sliced open, seeds removed, covered with a slice of pear and topped with some goat cheese and then broiled till the cheese melted. Delicious!

Our colourful pepper display attracts a lot of attention at market, causing people to stop and look - and then hopefully buy. What's interesting is that many of our peppers are bought by artists who will photograph or paint them rather than eat them.

It's the middle of November and there are still good peppers in the hoophouse.
I picked my Thai peppers yesterday.

Then I dried them in the dehydrator.
A great way to save some heat for a cold winter day!


  1. those are good stories!! i hope the kid was ok - i'm sure he learned a lesson!
    the peppers are gorgeous, though i am definitely on the same page as you as far as eating them goes. the pear/goat cheese combination sounds delicious! i am also a fan of the hot peppers in mildly sweetened jelly form made by my mother in law. it's a good way to ensure an even spread of the heat.

  2. That first story just doesnt get old

  3. I never get tired of telling that story, Johnny.
    And yes Haya,the kid was okay - perhaps just a little less cocky!
    My aunt also used to make a hot pepper jelly which was great - I should get ambitious and try some with the last of the peppers.