Hot Sauce

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Hot sauce, chili sauce, or pepper sauce refers to any spicy sauce made from chili peppers and other ingredients.

Louisiana-style is the most popular style in United States of America. Louisiana-style contains red chili peppers (Tabasco and/or Cayenne are the most popular), vinegar and water. Occasionally salt and/or Xanthan gum or other thickeners are used. We use it on any food. It is a great condiment that can add a flavour spice to any dish. It all depends on your taste for heat. It is very popular on Red Beans and rice, eggs, and any kind of fried seafood. Take your chance and experience the best that Louisiana has to offer. Tabasco is the most popular of all hot sauces, it comes in many different varieties and flavors.

Degrees of Heat

The heat, or burning sensation, experienced when consuming hot sauce is caused by capsaicin. The burning sensation is not "real" in the sense of damage being wrought on tissues. It is instead a chemical reaction with the body's neurological system.

The seemingly subjective perceived heat of hot sauces can be measured by the Scoville scale. The Scoville scale number indicates how many times something must be diluted with an equal volume of water until people can no longer feel any sensation from the capsaicin. Tabasco sauce is rated between 2,500 and 5,000 Scoville units. Dave's Insanity Sauce is rated between 150,000 and 180,000 Scoville units.

An easy way to determine the heat of a sauce is to look at the ingredients. Sauces tend to vary in heat by the ingredients in them.

Jalapeño - These sauces include green and red jalapeño chilis, and chipotle. Green jalapeño and chipotle are usually the mildest sauces available. Red jalapeño sauce is generally hotter.

Cayenne/Chile - Sauces made with cayenne and/or other red chilis, including most of the Louisiana-style sauces, are usually hotter than jalapeño but milder than other sauces.

Tabasco - Sauces made with tabasco peppers, like Tabasco sauce, are generally hotter than cayenne pepper sauces. Along with Tabasco, a number of "extra hot" sauces are made using a combination of tabasco and cayenne or other chili peppers.

Habanero - Habanero pepper sauces are almost the hottest natural pepper sauces only second to the Naga Jolokia. They contain either habanero only, or a combination of habanero and other peppers

Louisiana Made

Tabasco Hot Sauce

Tabasco Sauce is the brand name for a hot sauce produced by US-based McIlhenny Company of Avery Island, Louisiana. Tabasco sauce is made from tabasco peppers (Capsicum frutescens var. tabasco), vinegar, and salt, and aged in white oak barrels for three years. It has a hot, spicy flavor. Although produced in the United States, it is named after the state of Tabasco in Mexico. McIlhenny Company is in its fifth generation as a family business, and all 145 shareholders inherited their stock or were given it by a living family member. Tabasco sauce was invented in 1868 by Edmund McIlhenny, a Maryland-born former banker who had moved to Louisiana around 1840. Initially McIlhenny used discarded cologne bottles to distribute his sauce to family and friends, and in 1868 when he started to sell to the public he ordered thousands of new "cologne bottles" from a New Orleans glassworks. It was in these that the sauce was first commercially distributed, sharing till today a striking similarity to contemporary packaging for 4711 brand cologne. Until recently, all peppers were grown on Avery Island. While a small portion of the crop is still grown there, the bulk of the crop is now grown in Central and South America, where the weather and the availability of farmland allow more predictable and larger year-round supply of peppers. This also helps to ensure the supply of peppers should something happen to the crop at a particular location (such as a hurricane). Regardless, all seeds are still grown on Avery Island.

Following company tradition, the peppers are handpicked. To determine ripeness, peppers are checked with a little red stick, or le petit bâton rouge, that each worker carries. Those peppers not matching the color of the stick are not harvested. Peppers are ground into "mash" the same day they are harvested, placed in white oak barrels (aging barrels previously used for bourbon whiskey) with salt, and sent to warehouses on Avery Island for a three-year aging process. At the end of the aging, the mash is drained to remove skins and seeds from the liquid. This liquid is mixed with vinegar and stirred intermittently for a month before being bottled as finished sauce. Much of the salt used in Tabasco production is acquired locally from Avery Island's own salt mine, one of the largest in the U.S.

Several sauces are produced under the name Tabasco Sauce, including jalapeño-based green, chipotle-based smoked, habanero, garlic, and "sweet and spicy" sauces.

The habanero sauce and garlic sauces include the tabasco peppers blended with other peppers, whereas the jalapeño variety does not include tabasco peppers. None of these has the three-year aging process the flagship product use

Tabasco brand pepper sauce is sold in more than 160 countries and territories and is packaged in 22 languages and dialects. As many as 720,000 two-ounce (57ml) bottles of Tabasco sauce are produced daily at the Tabasco factory on Avery Island, Louisiana.

The Hottest

Dave's Insanity Sauce

Dave's Insanity Sauce, which for a while held the title of "world's hottest sauce." The sauce is widely distributed through gourmet hot sauce boutiques and online hot-sauce sites. It is well-known to hot sauce enthusiasts, and is often used as the standard of comparison for flaming hot sauces.

The original Dave's Insanity Sauce premiered around 1995 and was one of the first sauces to be made directly from capsaicin extract, allowing it to be hotter than the hottest habanero-pepper sauces of the day. It was the only hot sauce ever banned from the National Fiery Foods Show for being too hot. It has been rated at 180,000 Scoville units[1], compared with 2,500-5,000 for Tabasco sauce, which, before the 1990s, was the hottest sauce known to the average consumer. Part of the intrigue behind the sauce name (Insanity) was founder Dave Hirschkop’s wearing of a straitjacket at events promoting his products. Dave's Total Insanity, and Dave's Ultimate Insanity, which has been reported variously as from 90,000 to 250,000 on the Scoville scale and comes with a caveat Use this product one drop at a time. Keep away from eyes, children and pets. Not for people with heart or respiratory problems. May cause miscarriages in pregnant women. Also offered is Dave's Private Reserve which comes in a coffin-shaped package and has been reported variously as from 500,000 to 750,000 Scoville units. His most recent release is a super-limited holiday edition, which is two to three times as hot as his private reserve, and was limited to 200 bottles total, selling for $199 per bottle. I have personally tried this sauce and it is literally too hot for human consumption.

Gumbo and hot sauce go hand in hand.

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