Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Birth of a Pepper

 Hotter than a Pepper Sprout. . .the miracle of seeds
Like the little lambs being born around Sonoma County, it is the season for pepper plants at Quetzal Farm to start their life.  With nights near 30 degrees and blustery days, they do not belong outside but live in our cozy greenhouses.  Their journey has begun but it will be quite some time before they will bear fruits large enough to bring to market.  

Sprouted and Growing, these peppers are about to be transplanted into individual cells.

Chile Pepper First Aid

Well, it finally happened, after years of warning folks about the dangers of chopping chiles and rubbing your eyes, I made a serious slip. . .

On a trip to the mountains for some backcountry skiing, my friend Todd and I were making jambalaya and having a great time, I chopped up a few dried cayenne peppers, threw them in the pot, had a sip of home made wine, and then a burning sensation. . . .it came on fast so I realized this was not just a little wipe on the face but the real deal.

My first thought was dairy, that can help a lot with chile on the tongue,  but a yogurt compress did little after a few minutes.  I initially feared that water would make it worse but I decided to give it a shot.  I stuck my head in the sink and opened my eye under cold running water.  It felt better instantly and I stayed there for about 10 minutes with the coldest water I could get out of the tap.  It worked!

I was laughing at myself most of the time but I was a little worried that it would go on for hours, hopefully this advice will help someone else in this situation.  For the more common too much chile in the mouth situation, dairy is about the best solution.  If you have some raita on had it can be wonderful but any yogurt, milk, or ice cream will do.  Crackers, Bread and Chips work too.  Water does not help!  Really!  Just remember, picante passes and you will be back to normal in a little while. . .