Saturday, March 30, 2013

Old World Meets New

Here is the sort of food development we get from a collision of cultures.

The BBC News has written about a pub in Surrey, England that is selling spicy, chocolate Easter egg to its patrons.  Granted, chocolate and hot peppers are New World foods, but sugar cane is not, and the concept of the Easter egg is very much an Old World idea. The BBC article, complete with a photograph of the potent Easter symbol, can be found here.  (Thanks to Dermot Dobson for the pointer I followed to the article.)

When I say this egg is "spicy", I mean seriously spicy. This egg is made with three different varieties of extremely hot peppers, namely, ghost chili pepper, scotch bonnet, and habanero.  The result is supposedly hotter than 400 bottles of Tabasco sauce put together, and much hotter than the spicy Indian stew called vindaloo. 

The article quotes the owner as saying that the eggs are delicious, and I suspect that isn't just sales talk.  Assuming you enjoy peppers containing capsaicin (which I do, at least to some extent, though many folk do not), the combination of chocolate and pepper can be very tasty.  

Years ago, I helped host a party where one of the foods served was a specially made batch of chocolate haberero ice cream.  Because we had brought the ice cream from Pennsylvania to Texas where the party was being held (yes, we brought a hot pepper-containing food to Texas; it's a long story), the capsaicin had plenty of time to intensify, so that by the time we served it our ice cream was very potent indeed.  Sadly, many of the partygoers did not appreciate the heat, but to those of us with a tolerance for hot peppers it was a very special treat indeed.

I can't be in Surrey for Easter, and the pub has only got 24 eggs to sell (though the owner has hinted that he may make more if justified by demand), but I wish I could try this particular treat.

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