Cayenne Hot Sauce: Not for the Faint of Heart
The Cayenne pepper goes by many other names. Among these are: Guniea spice, bird pepper, Cow Horn Pepper or just plain old red pepper. Named after the city of Cayenne in French Guiana, the popular pepper has a Scoville rating of 30,000 to 50,000 and a 'hot factor' of 3 out of 5. The fruits of the cayenne pepper plant are used in cayenne hot sauce, dried and ground into spice and even in self-defense sprays used by police agencies and the public.
Cayenne peppers are a great source of Vitamin A and also contain vitamins B6, E and C along with riboflavin, potassium and manganese. Red pepper is popular in diet drink concoctions as it is claimed that the spice can speed up metabolism and increase blood circulation. With its vitamin potency, the cayenne pepper makes a great, nutritious addition to your garden.
Growing the cayenne pepper is easy to do, even in a temperate climate. The plants should be spaced about 3 ft. apart in nutrient-rich, moist soil. The plants will grow to about 3 feet in height and take just over three months to mature. Peppers can be picked when the tips start to turn orange or when the entire fruit is red though some recommend picking as soon as possible so the plant doesn't stop producing fruit. There is not much difference in the taste of a red cayenne and one that is just beginning to turn red.
Once you harvest the fruit, you can definitely make your own cayenne hot sauce but you might want to purchase a bottle or two to see where your flavor preferences lie. Some of the more popular (and entertainingly named) cayenne hot sauces are:
- Bull Snort Cowboy Cayenne Pepper Hot Sauce: can be used on burgers, seafood, and vegetables and as an additive to your homemade hot sauce(s).
- Screaming Sphincter Cayenne Pepper Hot Sauce: made with cayenne peppers, vinegar and salt, the sauce may be too hot for some, rated a 9 out of 10 on the heat meter, so use it sparingly!
- Pain is Good Diva Honey Cayenne: mustard, honey, cayenne peppers, orange juice and vegetable juices are all combined in this flavorful masterpiece. With just a touch of sweetness, the sauce adds flavor to any dish you can dream up.
- Crazy Mother Pucker's Cayenne Hot Sauce: made with molasses as an ingredient, Crazy Mother Pucker's should be a staple in your kitchen. Good on everything, you may find it particularly tasty on wings.
- Cajohn's Killer Cayenne Sauce: rated a 10 out of 10 on the heat meter, this sauce is sure to set your mouth on fire! For the true heat lover only, Cajohn's Killer Cayenne's is made with cayenne chilies, vinegar, sugar, salt and garlic.
Don't be afraid of cayenne hot sauce! Heat lovers will enjoy these sauces poured directly onto food and those that like a bit of kick, without the burn, will enjoy them as additives to barbecue sauces, salsas and even meat patties. Hot sauce can add a great flavor to almost anything you can devise in the kitchen!