The Effectiveness of Different Palate Relievers Against a Hot Chili Pepper Sauce

(1) Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey- Campus Cuernavaca, Mexico

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Mexican food is a combination of strong flavors, and of course, spicy ingredients (hot chili peppers). However, not everybody has developed a liking or resistance to hot chili peppers, hence a method for relief from the burning feeling they provoke is necessary. The purpose of this study was to evaluate which palate reliever worked best to mitigate the aftertaste hotness induced by capsaicin, the component responsible for the hot sensation in chili peppers. The hypothesis was that a substance capable of dissolving capsaicin (a nonpolar substance) would be the best palate reliever, making olive oil a prime candidate. Sensory tests were done using 12 untrained panelists with high, medium, and low resistance to hotness, a homemade hot chili pepper sauce, and five palate relievers. Palate relievers with different solubility properties, milk and ice cream (emulsions), olive oil (nonpolar substance), and water and a soft drink (polar substances), were used to alleviate the hotness sensation after trying the hot sauce. Regardless of the panelists’ tolerance towards the hot sauce (low, medium, or high), all rated milk and ice cream to be the best palate relievers and the soft drink to be the worst. The best palate reliever was an emulsion (milk or ice cream) and not olive oil, as was initially hypothesized.

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This article has been tagged with:

chili peppers palate relief food health sciences