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Jun 22, 2009 12:25 PM

Speaking of jalapenos...

Has anyone else been getting *insanely* hot jalapenos lately?

I've noticed for the last few years that jalapenos have become nothing more than glorified bell peppers in spiciness, but the last couple of times I've purchased...

OMG. Insanely, scary hot. Off the charts, really, for what I've become used to. Anyone else?

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  1. I cannot say I ever get consistently hot Jalapenos from the market. My experience is they are generally mild on the meter for me.....and I eat them whole or slice with membrane and seeds. I've tried purchasing large sizes and small as well. I always hand pick them for firmness and I check the stems to make sure they are not dried out, so I do not think either of those two indicators can be a factor in the heat indices.

    I find Italian Long Hots have more heat than Jalapenos myself.

    1 Reply
    1. re: fourunder

      I'd honestly started to think that the heat was being bred out, until the last month or so. I'd also noticed a few people recently mentioning getting pretty fierce chemical burns from cutting jalapenos, even though they've been doing it for years sans-gloves. (I was pretty paranoid the last time I cut a lot of jalapenos, which were the crazy-hot kind, and didn't have gloves. Luckily, washing my hands several times during the cutting seemed to do the trick.

      I'd forgotten that jalapenos used to taste like this.

    2. I put all jalapenos on the moderate scale as to hotness. Peppers can be funny though. Even individual peppers from the same source can vary wildly as to heat. This may be a factor.

      I believe a much larger factor is differences in individual peoples perception of heat. I like very hot peppers an tolerate them well. For me a jalapeno is a mild pepper with an undeserved reputation of being a very hot pepper. Other people consider them is really a matter of perception.

      Another factor may be that jalapenos have changed over time with the culture and are now created to have a smaller bite. Just look at the snack food industry featuring a hot jalapeno taste for their numerous products. I have never found one which is truly hot.
      I think this is done to cater to the vast majority of people brought up on bland food who think a little bit of spice is a lot.

      So it goes, farmers change the strains they grow for big business and the lowest common denominator prevails in the culture. When a few old fashioned jalapenos show up, people consider them insanely hot. Anyway, these are my few humble toughts on the matter and are submitted for your approval or not as the case may be.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Greyghost

        Absolutely! I had begun to routinely use a jalapeno or two in various veggie dishes. Last week I made a huge casserole and included 1 small jalapeno - WOW!. It was so hot I had to throw most of it out.

      2. I had an occasion to shop in a Korean market in NJ recently, and I bought some jalepenos. Usually, jalepenos are so mild that I chop the whole thing and don't bother to seed or de-rib them. Wow! They were so incredibly hot. I just thought that it was where I bought them!

        1. I picked up a pound at the farmers market in Tampa recently and smoked them. I couldn't dry them out like chipotles but they are nice and smokey. Also very hot. I attributed the increase in heat to the concentration of capsaicin in the smoking process. They are fire bombs

          1 Reply
          1. re: scubadoo97

            There is NOTHING worse than looking forward to launching into a fresh, green jalapeno and anticipating a nice pop of sweat on the forehead and it tastes like a green bell pepper. Ugh.

          2. I have been growing my own and find they are much hotter than the ones I use to purchase at the stores...However maybe someone can help me...One a couple of plants I had half come in red, can someone advise me why this happened...I have yet to try, but I am going to give it a whirl tonight.

            Roast 2 Jalapenos, after rmoving char outside, deseed and place into a food processor with 2 sticks of salted butter (real butter please) and a tbsp of creme fresh and place on plastic wrap and rool like a log and place in fridge ...Slather on grilled corn or use in making hash's supr good!

            2 Replies
            1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess

              It could be as easy as that when jalapenos ripen they turn red. As you probably already know, red jalapenos are usually smoked and turned into chipotles.

              1. re: jacobp

                These aregrowing red, not turning!

                As said I haven't tasted the heat in them yet, but can't wait too. Probably will make my own Chipotles and give out at the office ;)