Thai cuisine is dependent on the humble chilli pepper to give it that special spiciness that we know, love and regret in the morning.
Many different methods of calculating the relative hotness of chilies have been devised with the classic Scoville scale being considered the most useful, scientific and standardised.
Unfortunately, the Scoville scale relies on numbers and these have a tendency to become very abstract once moving beyond a certain point. It’s like giving weight in kilos back home. Everyone kind of knows what one kilo looks like but scale it up to the mid-80s and you’ll be asked ‘what’s that in stone?’
So, to aid and educate those who wish to sample the heat of a chilli, but need a metaphor that is grounded in real experience, I will be using a new method which, from this day forth, shall be called the TasteHitch Method.
The TasteHitch Method is basically a description of what happens when you accidentally touch your (or someone else’s) bits after handling raw chilli peppers and forget to wash your hands.
It is strongly recommended that you do not attempt your own study of the TasteHitch Method and accept that this is a scientific study for the perennially forgetful and stupid. I have a habit of being both of these things and as such, have done the experiments so you don’t have to.
I would also like to stress that it is a really good idea to not accidentally attempt the TasteHitch Method on your young child when changing the nappy. If you do this then you’ll be treated to a banshee-esque wail, gutsy screaming, tears, yelling, and the stony glare of your wife as you desperately smother your entire baby in nappy cream in a vain attempt to cool everything down.
Don’t ask how I know this, just trust that I do.
Banana chilies are kind of almost not really a chilli, you could happily eat them raw. After touching your bits you’ll notice a bit of tingling. Nothing too serious will occur.
Okay, here is a bit of a sudden leap in crotch based reactions. Basically an unpleasant warm glow will start, increasing steadily to actual pain. If you are of a nervous disposition you might well find yourself gently weeping. It’s not extreme pain, but will certainly be uncomfortable for a good hour.
Birds Eye Chilies.
These are hot to eat and so, unsurprisingly, will feel like you’ve decided to napalm your undercarriage. Extreme burning sensations will build until you are doubled over and screaming like a child whose nappy has been changed by someone with chilli on their hands. I would recommend that, regardless of location, you get undressed and jump a lake, puddle, pond, bath or other body of water. MAKE SURE THE WATER IS COLD. Long steamy showers are honestly not what you need right now. The pain will gradually subside into the dull glow most commonly associated with sunburn.
Tears of Satan Chiles.
Within 0.34 picto seconds your nether region will feel like Dresden as a firestorm of agony immobilises your entire being. Just before the last shreds of sanity flicker out you will doggedly drag your trembling frame to the freezer. Once you manage to club-handedly open the door and drag out the frozen veg you will repeatedly force a collection of peas, carrots and cauliflower into your underwear. You will then lie face down on the floor and forget your name, your loved one’s faces and what life was without your nads feeling like they had just brushed the sun. This is fated to be the exact moment your wife walks in with friends. As you have lost all ability to communicate other than in neanderthal grunts and ecstatic sighs of temporary relief, your wife will unquestioningly label you a sexual deviant and walk out of the house vowing divorce. Close to 48 hours later you may have normal feelings return but only because you have been wearing a codpiece fashioned out of cucumber and filled with yogurt. Sexual interactions should not be attempted in any way for at least a week but, as you are now freshly single, this won’t be a problem.