Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Chilli challenge, firebreathing idiots and the good they do!


I have always been interested in chillies, since I tasted one that was more than just hot.
So what does one do nowadays, ones goes on the internet to search for info.
Doing that I found that not all info is true, what a news, but also that there is a growing group of people that grow chillies themselves.
Most of the time people do that in order to get the ones you can’t get in the shops.
Smart idea I have to say, I am doing that myself too . . .

Looking online at facebook, twitter and what have ye, I found groups that thrive on the super-hot chillies.
Not my kind of thing really, for I want taste in my food, and not make food that’ll strip the paint off from any door.
Still, intrigued by it, I started reading up on those super-hot chillies.
Now as I did taste really wild chillies that were absolute taste bombs, I can imagine there are super-hot chillies that have super taste also.

Now devouring the info on the web, and reading about finger licking good chillies, I sort of got slave to the info.
My friend Chris Whitehouse, a great artist in painting and drawing who is helping me with a book I am writing, told me about this facebook group, Darth Naga’s funhouseoff pain. . . .
If I wanted to join, and I have to say I had to think about it.
For me, chillies are about taste and bringing some heat in the food, not more.
So, the funhouse of pain. . . .

Well I lurked there for a bit, and joined, expecting silly stories about people in pain for they were so daft to eat a super-hot chilli and had no milk in the house.
If I do burn up from a certain chilli, I use less or don’t eat that chilli ever again.

Nothing of that, or just a little, but most of all informative it is a group of chilli sillies like me.
Once and again you stumble over a video of someone eating a super-hot like having a sandwich, but that is about it.
So Chris asked me to look at a video of a super-hot chilli tester, who munches away chillies for fun and as a challenge.
No thanks, but after he asked me once again, I watched just one, and another.

I was not about to, as I think that there is a certain aspect of masochism in it, that I don’t like.
Why give yourself pain, in order to show that you can eat something?
Is it bravery, or just silly, intriguing question isn’t it?
So I “had” to look at this certain hot food taster.
Ted “the firebreating idiot” Barrus, is a promising name for something I just don’t want to see.
Still, this guy has something about him that I like.
He is not a madman or an idiot at all, a hardworking bloke that does reviews for ultra-hot chillies and sauces at the side.
Looking at a couple of his videos, I sort off started to be sort of a fan, and watch him at times eating away on something I’d rather not cook with.
We got friends at facebook, mailed a few times and even chatted with him.
He explained me a few things, and he explained why and what he did, for the love of chillies.
He now will be will be on the History channel in the future and has been mostly on ABC and some times on the BBC, he even has articles written about him in big newspapers and all.

He gets a kick out of eating them chillies and sauces, which I think is harmless, and comes from higher adrenaline and endorphin levels due to the pain.
Your body feels real pain like burning, even if it is not really burning.
So the body produces adrenalin and endorphin to help you with the pain, and those two give you a rush like running up the Mount Everest.
 Now sure, it is odd to eat a chilli that is hot enough to spice up a whole cow, but then again he is making something good out of it.
I have been looking at other tasters as well, and Ted Barrus stands out, as he keeps it nice and informative. I would therefore say he almost is “the ambassador for chillies” and their growers.
No, not almost, he is “the ambassador for chillies” for sure.
He takes the time to explain and warn people about the effects, and he tells about their taste.
He is the spokesman for the super-hot chilli and chillies in general, and he informs you about what sauces are great, and which are almost too hot to handle.
Yes, I am a fan!

More than fans he gets so famous now, that he is getting hate mails, he has a load of copy cats, and people steal his videos. He even has a stalker now. People seem to get happy leaving odd and brutal comments at his videos, and he gets sucked in the competition for the world’s hottest chilli.
The side effects of getting famous, he really is getting famous, as he should !

There are 2 more tasters that I want to mention.
One is Gareth Fenwick as he makes a wonderful description of the effects it has on him in tiny detail.
He really lets you in to the world of natural high almost, telling how and what happens if you eat a super-hot chilli.
He also has a great way of telling about their taste.
He is not over the hill, if you know what I mean.

Even the Netherlands has a bloke that eats chillies like there is no tomorrow.
His name is Ton Maas, and he sometimes does a taste testes with his son.
I had a chat with him just about a week ago, and as he and I both have Dutch as our native tongue, it is easier for me to learn.
Sorry, being Dutch and all. . . . hehe
He told me the kick was in the challenge as well as the effects. The side effects with the adrenalin and all, makes him feel a load better after eating something fiery.

I do have to say, even I get that kick a bit.
After a hard day’s work, eating a good dish that was a bit overboard with the chillies, I feel like I can climb a mountain !

Eat more heat,

Yours truly,

Bart J. Meijer

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