Why is everyone fired up about hot sauce? Where did it originate, and why is it so darn popular today? Depending on your version of how to make hot sauce, here is some heated debate on the subject.
Hot sauce became known in the US around 1807, when cayenne sauces appeared in Massachusetts. In England, the infamous Tabasco sauce was imported to the US and debuted in 1849. Obtained from a Tabasco pepper in Mexico, it is touted as the original and only sauce of its kind today. However, most homegrown hot sauces into the US are coming from the South; specifically within the Cajun cuisine ethnic foods. The timeline and sauces include:
* 1860: a Bird Pepper sauce was introduced out of New York City.
* 1877: a chilly sauce out of Chicago was born.
* 1893: southern Louisiana produced Hotter n’ Hell Pepper sauce.
* 1916: the Red Hot Creole Pepper sauce was created in New Orleans.
* 1941: the red taco sauce, green taco sauce and enchilada sauce were introduced.
* 1947: produced picante sauce.
* 1980: Dat'l Do It sauce and Hellish Relish was created.
While these hot sauces have been widely recognized as the best, it was Blair Lazar who is responsible for creating the hottest sauce to date. With ingredients consisting of chili powder; vinegar and chili pepper, Mr. Lazar has become the owner and creator of such world renowned sauces such as: Mega Death; Original Death; Sudden Death; and After Death. In addition, his latest effort is called 16 Million Reserve, which is considered to be the hottest collection of hot sauces every created, boasting eighty times hotter than Tabasco sauce. This sauce requires one pound of capsaicin, an alkaloid oil which has a heat score of 16 million units, and is obtained from several thousand pounds of fresh peppers. It is suggested that not even a chemist could produce such intense heat in a laboratory.
While Louisiana may be the home of the hottest sauces; conversely, Mexico prefers flavor rather than heat. Vinegar is used very little or not at all. Chipotle, which has become quite popular in the hot sauce category today, combines dried and smoked jalapeno peppers. Asia, on the other hand, uses more ingredients than either Louisiana or Mexico. Their sauces are sweeter and are prepared with garlic and other condiments to increase flavor. You may certainly attest to the fact that Chinese, Thai and Indian sauces happen to be the hottest sauces produced. They would certainly give Mr. Lazar a run for his money! Some other well-known hot sauces include: Habanera, which is a pepper sauce; and Peri-Peri, which is also known as the African Birds Eye Chile.
Many hot sauces are made in food competitions; and while they are no doubt easy to prepare, the true test is in the tasting. There are some hot sauces which one wouldn't dare to try; yet there are others who have been known to drink it from the bottle. One need only watch any of the food channel's programs to find hot sauce has become a favorite, albeit necessary staple in some cultures. The next time you inquire how to make hot sauce, conduct a little research into the components involved. Better safe than sorry!
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