On the 16th of January every year, extreme eaters all over the world can let loose their passion for every fiery ingredient, sauce, dip and dish and indulge like never before.
Believe it or not, some people go wild! Especially in America, international hot & spicy day is a major event. From chilli eating to cook-offs, debates and fancy-dress competitions, sparks truly fly on this day.
However, it’s not just a day for those who love that nose-dripping, eye-tearing, mouth-watering sensation. Spice in its various forms has been a vital part of cooking worldwide for over 6000 years.
No matter how much heat you can handle, celebrating the chilli is a bandwagon we can all board. So, to make this national hot & spicy food day even more special, one of our chefs has crafted a couple of fiery and easy recipes: Ginger Soy Chicken Skewers with Fire House Sauce and Crispy Chicken Popper with Spicy Buffalo Sauce.
Before we heat things up in the kitchen, let’s delve into the history of the chilli and the origins of this day.
The History of International Hot and Spicy Food Day (January 16th):
Unsurprisingly, the chilli pepper first originated in Mexico, and the locals used them, well, to spice up their lives. Another unsurprising fact; it was Christopher Columbus, who took the chilli to Spain, then America. From there, it spread like wildfire to the rest of the world.
However, much like Columbus thought America was India, he also mistook the chilli for black pepper; hence its name: chilli pepper. Later, in 1948, when the Portuguese explorer, Vasco De Gama, landed on the shores of India, he brought the chilli with him, and that’s how we got it.
In today’s world, not only is India one of the world’s top chilli producers, but Assam also cultivates one of the world’s hottest chillies: Naga Jolokia. Funnily enough, no one knows how or who first dubbed the 16th of January International Hot & Spicy Food Day. However, it was probably someone who wanted everyone to share in his or her love for all things fiery. Although, there’s more to just taste when it comes to the chilli.
Top 5 Benefits of Spicy Food:
According to research, these health benefits might make you love the chilli even more:
- Capsaicin. It’s the compound that adds heat to a chilli. Scientists believe that capsaicin could burn more than just your taste buds. It’s been linked to fat burning and a more active metabolism i.e. chillies might help you lose weight.
- This compound is also believed to reduce inflammation, so much so that there are over the counter ointments now that are made using capsaicin to combat external inflammation.
- Now the benefits of capsaicin don’t end there. According to some studies, this compound can fight some cancer-causing cells.
- It could also help boost the good bacteria that naturally occur in your gut, which means improved digestion and gut health.
- Finally, as if all the above isn’t enough, capsaicin is also used in some topical creams to help reduce pain.
Ginger Soy Chicken Skewers with Fire House Sauce:
For this recipe, we recommend our Boneless Chicken Breast. However, we have a few other cuts that would work just as well. For instance, our Chicken Tenders.
Just so you know, Licious chicken is sourced from government approved partners and biosecure farms. Our chickens are given vegetarian feed and chosen at the right weight, approximately 1.5 – 1.6kgs.
Furthermore, all our meat & seafood undergoes 150+ safety & quality checks before being approved for sale. The meat is then cut, cleaned & washed in RO purified water by expert meat technicians, sealed using vacuum-pack technology and delivered to your doorstep for the most convenience.
What this means for you is that you can trust the quality and freshness of whatever you order, and you need not do any prep work. Just open the pack and use your meat as is!
Crispy Chicken Poppers with Spicy Buffalo Sauce:
If you don’t feel like starting from scratch, this recipe is the solution. You only need to make the sauce. For the chicken, we highly recommend our Crispy Chicken Poppers.
These meatballs are everything you crave and more! Cheesy, crunchy and certainly spicy! They’re breadcrumb coated, stuffed with cheese and jalapeño, and only need to be deep-fried to perfection for under 8 minutes to enjoy!
10 Spiciest Foods around The World That You Must Try:
If you’re looking to add even more spice to your life. These other recipes will be worth looking into:
- Indian Phaal Curry: Using the Naga Jolokia, scotch bonnet or habanero, this curry originated in Indian Restaurants in Britain. It is often dubbed the hottest curry in the world.
- Thai Tom Yum: A spicy & sour soup containing seafood and vegetables, Tom Yum also incorporates the famous Thai bird’s eye chilli.
- Ethiopian Sik Sik Wat: This is a paste made from fenugreek, chillies and paprika. It can be paired with stew or eaten with native injera bread.
- Mongolian Sichuan Hot-Pot: Most people associate Sichuan with China, but tread carefully if you try this Mongolian dish. The broth is laden with meat, vegetables and heaps of Sichuan peppers.
- Jamaican Jerk Chicken: Packed with the finest Caribbean ingredients, this dish packs something else too – a punch. It cannot be complete without the famous scotch bonnet.
- Mexican Camarones a la Diabla: The name probably gives it away. The guajillo and arbol chillies are used to make a fiery sauce that coats the shrimp in this dish.
- Korean Kimchi Jjigae: Everyone has heard of Korean fermented cabbage, Kimchi, meet its spicier cousin: Kimchi Jjigae. The dish contains an ample amount of red chilli peppers.
- Indonesian Otak-Otak: Essentially a steamed fish cake, Indonesian people make good use of dried chillies and other spices in this popular dish.
- Peruvian Papa A La Huancaina: What looks like a simple salad of eggs and olives is drenched in a spicy sauce made using the Amarillo chilli.
- Haitian Griot: Another meaty dish that features the scotch bonnet. It is one of Haiti’s hottest and most loved dishes.
So, spice lovers, we hope you enjoy making these quick and easy recipes. We know the flavours are fantastic and no doubt these might become your new favourite snacks. Happy Hot & Spicy Food Day!