The Main Component of Super Hot Peppers is Related to Vanilla

Chemistry, Food
[caption id="attachment_24231" align="alignright" width="480"] Not hot enough for some people...[/caption] Spicy hot peppers can provide culinary delight, or gastronomical torture for those with sensitive stomachs. So what is it – from a chemistry perspective – that makes those hot peppers so hot? Hot Peppers Contain Capsaicin For simplicity’s sake, we’ll limit the scope of this article to a single hot pepper constituent: capsaicin (IUPAC chemical name, (E)-N-[(4-Hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)methyl]-8-methylnon-6-enamide). Scientists assign capsaicin in pure form a Scoville heat value of 16,000,000. The Scoville value is subjective. Raters determine heat by means of tasting increasing dilution of pepper solutions. The jalapeño pepper, for example, possesses a Scoville rating of up to 4,000, while a habanero pepper rates at about a 250,000 on the scale. [caption id="attachment_24242" align="alignleft" width="280"] The relatively mild jalapeño pepper.[/caption]…
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