Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ghost Pepper Salsa

I have always been a hot pepper enthusiast, but am even more so now than ever before. Ever since going to Austin and buying a ghost pepper hot sauce out of the coffin in the hot sauce shop, I've been a bit obsessed with ghost peppers. So, when I heard there was a guy in Philadelphia selling fresh ghost peppers, I knew I had to find him.


Bhut Jalokia, nicknamed the ghost pepper, was entered into the Guinness Book of World Records as the hottest pepper in the world in 2007. It has since then been surpassed by Trinidad Scorpion "Butch T" which was grown by The Chili Factory (Australia) and rated at 1,463,700 Scoville Heat Units. The Scoville Heat Units measure a pepper's heat. But, even though it is no longer rated the hottest, I can tell you it is still very hot. A ghost pepper measures over 1,000,000 Scoville units while a jalapeno only measures in at 8,000. They say the ghost pepper is twice as hot a a red savino habanero. Oh, yeah!

So, I found this guy's booth at the farmer's market, but there was no sign for these peppers. When I asked him about them, he pulled a couple out and confirmed that he did, indeed, have some. He sold me two along with some other hot peppers and gave me several warnings that I will pass along to you:
  1. Wear rubber gloves when slicing them. The capsaicin in peppers, which causes the heat, is easily transferred to your mouth and eyes causing severe pain.
  2. Wear a mask, if possible, when slicing them.
  3. To reiterate, do not touch them while slicing! 
  4. Do not eat the seeds. They will burn on the way out, if you know what I mean.
Now, with that in mind, let's make some salsa. I made a great hot salsa with these peppers. Do not attempt this if you can't take the heat!


Ghost Pepper Salsa

Ingredients
  • 1-2 fresh ghost peppers
  • 28-oz can chopped tomatoes (I used Muir Glen)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Juice of 3/4 of a lime
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin

Instructions
Put gloves and a mask on and slice the top off the ghost pepper(s).


Remove the seeds and most of the membrane. Do not use the seeds, but you can use some of the membrane for more heat. Chop the ghost peppers.  Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.


Remove from the heat, place in a container, and refrigerate overnight. Serve cold with chips. Enjoy the heat!

21 comments:

  1. This looks amazing. I have been wanting to try fresh ghost peppers for sooo long! Which farmers market in Philly did you get them? I will be there soon and want to check it out!

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  2. I found them at the Head House farmer's market. I can't wait to get more!

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  3. I grew 6 plants this summer in northern VA...I have hundreds of ghost peppers....ah the heat!!!

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  4. I just made a batch for a friend, smells yummy, I'm calling mine Satan's blood.

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  5. How many servings does this yeild?

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  6. I'm growing ghost peppers in South New Jersey. My oldest plant is 3 years old and it still produces a lot of peppers. I love growing them and plan on making your salsa with them. Ty for the instructions.

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  7. Awesome. I only wish I could get more locally. Does anyone know where to get them in DC?

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    1. I have a ghost pepper plant that has a bunch of peppers on it but they have yet to turn red. If you're interested I could meet you in Logan Circle or Dupont sometime if you're interested.

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    2. That would be amazing! Email me at angela [at] theveraciousvegan.com!

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  8. Wonderful recipe! I have a few ghost peppers from the garden to use up, and I made a big batch of this salsa for some of them. It turned out to be very good, thanks!

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  9. I assume you can substitute habaneros if ghost peppers are not be found?

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  10. We have Ghost Peppers here in Southern California. We planted 2 plants and they are going crazy. Making salsa next weekend with our first harvest. Wish us luck. Thank you for sharing.

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  12. How hot is the salsa

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    1. It all depends on how many of the seeds you leave in. More seeds = more hot!

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  13. How long can you store the salsa? Also can you freeze it?

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  14. It should store well for a week and, yes, you can freeze it.

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