Hello again everyone, this week I’m going a little off schedule and bringing you an extra little bonus recipe. After all, what better way is there to celebrate the season of giving than with a free gift for you and a free shout out to one of my fellow food bloggers, Dana from I’ve Got Cake?
You see, I’m not bringing you my own creation today but rather adapting one of hers. With this, the 7-pod or 7-pot brainstrain:
According to various sources, this little sucker peaks at over 1.4 million scoville, making it the Guinness Book of Records’ third hottest chilli in the world but I cannot confirm with any degree of certainty whether that is the case. Guinness themselves don’t list any chilli that hasn’t once held the top spot.
What I can say, however, is that my personal experience places it somewhere between the legendary naga viper and the unrated 7-pod/pot primo, which is the third hottest I’ve tried.
Regardless of where it ranks, however, this chilli is stupidly hot but also has a flavour reminiscent of red fruit. It’s wonderfully tasty and even featured in an equally delicious jam back in November. And now I’m going to bake with it.
I’m going to make some wonderfully punny and special brownies, without the weed found in the original recipe. What I’m making are totally legal (even where I live) 7-Pot Brownies!
But first, if I’m doing it right, I need to take some time to infuse the butter.
Unfortunately, butter is a dairy product. It’s going to dissolve the capsaicin from the chilli*. If I use real butter, I’m going to lose a lot of the heat, so I decided to use this stuff instead:
Vegan butter substitute. All the buttery goodness with none of the cooling properties.
So I’m going to gently heat 150g of this stuff to melt it, then shred in the chilli.
To make sure I don’t overheat the pepper and either cook it or vapourise the oils, I’m not going to apply heat directly to the butter, though. Instead, I’m going to place it in a small container above gently boiling water like so:
And I’m going to continue to stir regularly as I heat it for another six hours. However, if you want to follow along at home, I recommend cutting that time in half because, after the three hour mark, I saw no difference in heat or flavour.
Speaking of which, do not do this in a plastic or metal container. Infuse for this long in one of those and your chilli butter will pick up unwanted metallic or plastic tastes.
Refrigerate when you’re done and you should soon have a pepper flavoured butter substitute with a long, slow burn that builds almost to the level of ghost pepper sauce. A potent
on my scale.
It hasn’t picked up the specific fruitiness of the brainstrain but it has picked up a lot more dried chilli flavour than any chilli butter I’ve had before, meaning that this method, while kinda slow, would be a perfect way to enliven popcorn or corn on the cob.
But that’s not what I’m using it for today. As I’ve mentioned already, I’m making brownies with this stuff, so I’m going to need to gently melt it again.
First though, here’s the rest of the ingredients:
120g milk chocolate
150g self-raising flour
250g brown sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
A pinch of salt
And a lidful of vanilla extract (or two of essence)
I put the oven on to warm up to 180°C and then begin to warm up the butter.
To get it melting, I’m going to use a slightly different method this time. Instead of using water vapour to heat it, I’m going to pick out a bigger bowl and float it in the water. I like to use a sieve or colander to make sure it doesn’t sink.
Why am I doing this? Because I’m going to be melting the chocolate into it so it needs a little more direct heat.
As the butter begins to melt, I break in the chocolate and stir to make sure it takes up the heat evenly. It’s important to make sure the water doesn’t boil at any point or the chocolate will be ruined.
Once the two have been thoroughly combined, I remove them from the heat and allow them to cool slightly before adding my vanilla and eggs, beating them gently into the mix.
I then sieved and folded in my cocoa, flour, sugar and that pinch of salt and put the resulting batter into a greased, lined baking tray to cook for 35 minutes.
Unfortunately, my brownies came out quite thin and crispy, due to the size of my tray spreading the batter out too much but they still had a decent bit of chew and a fairly standard brownie flavour, along with a really slow growing burn that eventually reached the very bottom of a
that then tapered off and faded away just as slowly as it came on.
It’s the sort of long, friendly, warming heat that’s perfect for these cold months and I really enjoyed the batch I made but, if I’m perfectly honest, I probably wouldn’t make these brownies again.
The sheer amount of time required to infuse the butter is not something I can easily set aside easily and, while infusing the heat into the fat of the recipe does give it a wonderfully slow burn you can’t get otherwise, it just doesn’t feel worth the investment to me. Especially as a spoonful of ghost pepper powder in the mix will give it a similar amount of kick for far less effort.
At the end of the, this was a fun experiment with good results, though, and, while I’m unlikely to repeat it as is, I may well use the butter infusion technique for other things.
As for the original recipe, I will link you to its creator again because I respect her and her work but I feel as though my head is enough of a mess already, without doing anything not legal in my country. I do not condone psychoactive ingredients and so will not be linking to the recipe itself but will also accept that others have the right to make their own choices in life.
If it’s legal where you live, feel free to look her recipe up. Just don’t expect adapting mine back to give you a high straight from the oven.
*This line has been edited on the arrival of new information from the commenter known as “Spex”. In response to his claims, I attempted to clarify what it is in dairy that helps in this post here.
It’s the caseins in dairy products that break down the capsaicin, not lactose.
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This is contrary to everything I have ever heard but I will do some research and edit the post if you are right.
Can you provide a source for your information on lactose? I can provide a couple for for casein:
I can’t find anything about lactose and capsaicin interaction.
Basically, the casein is lipophilic (fat-loving) and surrounds and washes away the fatty capsaicin molecules. It doesn’t break them down so much as prevent them from coating the mouth as easily. It’s also why milk is such an effective antidote, washing the capsaicin from your mouth like a good detergent removing grease.
I did not realise that what had been considered common knowledge for most of my life was a contested point and I have been reading through those and many other articles since your earlier comment. I am happy to accept that I was probably wrong but, as someone from a scientific background, I cannot simply accept your counter-theory when every supporting article I’ve read has glaring inaccuracies elsewhere in its text. I will, therefore, be working on actually testing casein’s effects firsthand in next couple of weeks.
Thank you for your interest, I hope the resolution of this matter will satify us both.
My latest post https://spicefreakblog.wordpress.com/2017/01/26/the-power-of-milk should hopefully help shed some light on the matter.
Totally fair, I just can’t find anything related to lactose breaking down capsaicin. Sugar (such as lactose) is known to help reduce the sensation of the burn from capsaicin, but it doesn’t actually directly interact with the capsaicin. Instead if adds an additional strong flavor sense (sweet) to flood the receptors. That’s all I can seem to find. I’m curious to hear more from your personal research.
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That is indeed how most sugars affect heat, by creating a competing sensation that detracts from the brain’s ability to process it. In general, sugar does nothing to the tongue’s actual heat detection.
I had simply been led to believe that lactose was special.