How is it possible that some people truly enjoy the “burning” sensation spicy food produces while others’ eyes water with just a sniff of it. The secret to not only handling spicy food but actually enjoying it goes far beyond tastes and colors. Just like anything else, spicy food is an acquired taste and while some enjoy it some can barely stand it. However, it’s certain that everyone can train their taste buds to withstand it and even enjoy it.
the actual sensation people experience while eating spicy food is often described as a burn or heat feeling but basically is all a trick of the mind. In fact, spicy foods interact with the taste buds causing the pain receptors to get excited and it is more highly associated with a temperature change more than a burn. Interestingly enough spearmint excites the same exact receptors but in the opposite way, it creates a sensation of cold instead of hot.
In many kitchens spicing up dishes is used in order for the flavors to pop. Others use spicy chilies since it’s locally grown ingredients in their country. But most enjoy the tingling burn in the tongue and the feeling of happiness that the endorphin release creates.
In some cultures such as Mexican, Indian and Thai, spicy food is the basic cuisine. Even kids have high tolerances due to their early exposure to it. In Mexico for example popular kid snacks include spicy tamarind, hot lollipops, and chili covered mango. For some these might not sound like snacks at all but interestingly enough these snacks have grown so much in popularity that Mexico exported in 2018 over $300 Million worth of spicy candy to the United States alone.
Spicy foods’ popularity has grown beyond its country boundaries. The spicy food trend started to really take off in the last couple of years with different chillies gaining traction amongst chefs and connoisseurs. This made it ideal for the opportunity of tasting expositions. A great way to expose their creations is the use of catering tables for the setup. It is also important to keep in mind creativity, the round buffet tables could be an interesting mix. More than the fact that the food is hot they realized that they were able to create dishes with bolder tastes and introduce to the public new mixes that they had never tried before. With so many levels of spiciness and inherit flavors in them they were able to create new dishes and give twists to existing ones.
And just as an added bonus, please let us share with you a recipe for our chefs here at Mogogo.
- 2lbs of boneless chicken thighs diced into 1inch cubes
- 2 onions- thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon of chipotle peppers
- 2 tomatoes- peeled and grated
- 1 green chili pepper-diced thinly
- 5 garlic cloves- chopped
- 1 cup cilantro- chopped
- Olive oil
- Salt and black pepper
First you heat a pot with olive oil and fry the onions until golden
Increase the heat and add the chicken to the pot-stir until brown
Add the garlic and chipotle peppers- stir once
Add chopped tomatoes and chili peppers and cover the pot with the lid
Lower the heat
Cook for 15 minutes- stir once in a while and add a little water if needed
Remove pot from stove- add cilantro and stir gently
Serve with tortilla, guacamole and tomato salsa (Pico de Gallo).