To get an idea of how big Hunan is on chilies, perhaps a Chinese saying offers the best insight: “Guizhou people like spiciness, Sichuan people don’t fear spiciness, Hunan people fear there’s no spiciness.”
Living up to its reputation, Hunan has prepared a scorching challenge of eating 50 Tabasco chili peppers. Ten people can sign up for the challenge every day until the end of August.
|This photo taken on July 8, 2018 shows a contestant taking part in a chilli pepper eating competition in Ningxiang in China's central Hunan province. (AFP-Yonhap)|
|A chilli pepper-eating competition in Ningxiang in China's central Hunan province. (AFP-Yonhap)|
|Being the first day of the festival on July 9, the chili-eating contest allowed more than 10 contestants. (AFP-Yonhap)|
|The Tabasco chili pepper, with a rating of 30,000-50,000 Scoville Heat Units, is reportedly much stronger than South Korea's cheongyang red pepper. (AFP-Yonhap)|
On the first day of the festival, the winner was a local boy, Tang Shuaihui, who cleared his plate of 50 Tabasco chilies in just 68 seconds, according to an Agence France-Presse report.
The Tabasco pepper is somewhere between a jalapeno and a habanero on the Scoville Heat Scale, which measures the piquancy of chilies based on capsaicin concentration. The Tabasco chili pepper, with a rating of 30,000-50,000 Scoville Heat Units, is reportedly much stronger than South Korea’s cheongyang red pepper (10,000 Scoville Heat Units).
While munching the Tabasco pepper, the contestants sat in a pool of water filled with peppers, but these peppers were of a far weaker variety to avoid irritating participants’ skin.
Photos by AFP
Written by Lim Jeong-yeo (firstname.lastname@example.org)