Despite what you might think, the world’s hottest chili pepper was created not by a Mexican or Indian farmer, but by a “hot” British farmer.
Gerald Fowler grew the Naga Viper on his farm in Cumbria, northern England, and got to a record level of spiciness by crossing three of the hottest varieties of chili, including Bhut – Jolokia, the previous record holder.
There is a special way to measure their hotness. It’s not like someone tastes this babies. The heat of a chili pepper is measured using the Scoville Scale – the number of Scoville unites indicates the amount of capsaicin found in the chili, this being what gives it’s spiciness. Bhuta – Jolokia reached a maximum of 1.001.304 units whereas the Naga Viper has 1.359.000.
In an interview for The Daily Mail, Mrs.Fowler confirmed : ‘It’s painful to eat. It numbs your tongue, then burns all the way down. It can last an hour, and you just don’t want to talk to anyone or do anything. But it’s a marvellous endorphin rush. It makes you feel great.’
What I find interesting is that he makes people vouch in writing for their sanity, before letting them taste his chili.