Condiments are prevalent throughout all global cuisines…adding a little more flavor to each dish via sweetness, sour or what we will be focusing on in this article, HEAT in the form of hot sauce. The majority of hot sauces come from warmer climates, due to the availability of capsicum in the region. Another point is that consuming hot sauce or even spicy foods in warmer climates actually helps make one’s body temperature rise so the body can sweat and cool off in the hot and humid weather environments… nature’s natural cooling system.
There are additional health benefits attributed to consuming hot sauces. Capsicum peppers contain large amounts of Vitamin C and are known to be a great antioxidant and for increasing metabolism, strengthening the immune system and reducing inflammation. For well-being, spicy foods react with the pain receptors in one’s mouth sending a signal to the brain to release pain killing endorphins (similar to a runner’s high) which can make one feel happy. With this knowledge, it gives us a better understanding of why some chili fanatics continue to seek out peppers that are higher and higher on the Scoville heat index.
Hot sauces are prepared in several different ways. A traditional hot sauce from Louisiana stems from a specific varietal of capsicum pepper mash combined with salt and aged up to three years in oak barrels, then bottled with vinegar and fermented several weeks. Other recipes from around the world might incorporate vinegar, garlic, soybeans, rice or other ingredients to complement the capsicums from that region and create a unique flavor profile such as sriracha. Sriracha is fermented mashed red chilies with vinegar and garlic that give a fresh bright heat that one experiences the moment they taste it. A relative newcomer to the U.S. market from Korean cuisine is gochujang – mashed red chilies with soybeans, glutinous rice, salt and sometimes sweetened with honey or sugar then fermented to deliver a savory, pungent, grounded heat delivering a slower burn once eaten. Chipotle and cayenne capsicum varietal hot sauce bases have been in the U.S. market for over several decades. As more consumers seek out interesting global cuisine from warmer regions one can be assured that hot sauces overall are here to stay. Expect to see new ones gaining more popularity in the coming years from other parts of the globe like the North African version peri peri. The phrase “some like it hot” seems to be an understatement. On the contrary, a lot of consumers like it hot…with hot sauces that is.
Newly Weds Food loves to be ahead of the curve on all hot trends, not just hot sauce. Let us help you deliver these and other unique flavors, to keep your product initiatives right on trend.
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