Soundbites | Pepper fruit: On Heady Scents & Numbing Tongues
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I find the scent of pepper fruit heady. I can smell the spice, the freshness but lately, with the copious amounts I buy every week, I find myself asking people questions and noticing a few other things –
Like how, according to my friends D and R, it looks like raw peanuts;
Like how the flavour comes in waves – flesh and seeds chewed and lingers long after I’m done eating it, a slight bitterness on the tongue. The skin has a level of heat and the seeds more so. Each bite of one or the other seems to release a whole entire family of scents and tastes on my tongue;
How my nose twitches with the aromatics and menthol – I think the oleoresins might be responsible for this. I think the green ones have more of the compound than the reds. A few days ago, I kept sneezing at work – it seemed like the pepper fruits we were munching on had released lots of aromatics into the ‘environment’.
A survey of existing literature shows that pepper fruits contain essential oils and pheolic acids , ethanol , alkaloids, ethylacetate, flavonoids, tannis and glycosides.
Indications show that the rich presence of a type of essential oil called oleoresins determines the aromatic flavouring, colouring and pungent properties of pepper fruits; Source
And interestingly, I’ve also experienced a mild, numbing sensation in my mouth which reminds me of Sichuan peppercorns.
And like how my friends, R and B say it tastes like they imagined flowers would and yes, we talked about this and more in my first ever ‘podcast, foodcast’… There will be more of these soon – mostly monologues but more if I get willing participants.