From very scholarly research conducted in 35 seconds, I have learned that Scotch Bonnet and habenero are very similar. Both score 325,000 on the Scoville Heat Index, though haberos can get up to 570,000. Thai chilis are 150,000 (and they are seriously hot). Jalapenos (I could eat them in my sleep and not even notice) are a mere 5,000. Good to know that I can replace my caribbean hot sauce babies with habeneros, though I will keep scouring the Sactown for the goods .

In other educational news, hot sauce is measured by Scoville Heat Units, which measures the “heat” of a chili pepper or the amount of capsaicin it contains. Capsaicin stimulates nerve receptors in our skin and makes us either blissfully joyous or cry and scream. It turns bland dorm food to French Laundry.

The red savina habanero is my next conquest. Then the bhut jolokia of Northeastern India. I’m glad India’s Defence Research Laboratory is properly ranking this puppy at 855,000 units. New Mexico State University’s Chile Pepper Institute found a 1.1 million Scoville ranking in 2005. And, in 2009, the DRL said they’d start using the pepper in hand grenades for crowd control. Hot sauce, people, is more than a condiment, it’s political.

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