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Michael Charles Messineo

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Hot Sauce The Misunderstood Flavor Enhancer
By Michael Charles Messineo
Last edited: Monday, January 24, 2011
Posted: Saturday, January 22, 2011

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Hot sauce is just hot sauce?... Far from it, my cooking friends. You have a selection of flavors to enhance every meal that is only limited by your own creative imagination. The best cooks know that the majority of hot sauce is not hot, but rather a secret ingredient to improve their meals.

How many times have you heard, "I don't like hot sauce, it's just too hot." Have you ever heard someone say, "I don't like iced tea, it's just too cold." It's not about the temperature, it's about the flavors. Less than 20% of hot sauce is extremely hot, while the majority is a flavor enhancer for your meals.

When most people hear "hot sauce" they think chicken wings, and that is simply unfair to the talented brew masters of these highly evolved flavor enhancers. There is always the one person who has to prove their dragon breath talent and orders the last name on the list that go from mild to Volcano III. Then while eating their chicken wings, they start to sweat, their face turns red and they exclaim, "It's hot, but I've had hotter." While it is true there are hot sauces that you can find in sports bars with creative hot names such as Hell's Inferno, Three Mile Island, or the Widow-maker, there is a much broader collection of mild to medium that will add an array of flavors to any dish.

These sauces comes in various degrees of hot: Mild, Medium, Medium-Hot, Hot, Insanely hot, and as an Extract, not for general consumption but is a highly concentrated version that is an add-on to existing sauces, one drop at a time.

If you're looking for blazing hot sauce then you must understand the Scoville heat scale that ranks heat levels of peppers used in them with a ranking from zero for Bell Peppers to 50,000 for cayenne peppers, to 1,000,000 for the Naga Jolokia pepper.

Hot sauce may be the given name on the bottle, but "flavor enhancing" can come from additional ingredients like apples, garlic, peach, and raspberry... Peach and Raspberry? Yes... and don't forget dessert hot sauces in other flavors to enhance your pancakes, oatmeal, cheese cake and even ice cream.

Adding more heat to your various dishes is a common experience such as adding a dab of heat to scrambled eggs, but the creative cooks know that adding a raspberry sauce to a pork roast in a crock-pot will work for you all day. The incredible selection of flavored sauces is a must for those cooks who like to experiment and find unique new zest in their kitchen creations.

Most supermarkets have the small shelf space showcasing the usual generic hot sauce sampling of Tabasco, Crystal, Frank's, Cholula and maybe a few other choices, but my research found numerous other brands with over 1,000 different labels with various heat levels, and an extraordinary array of flavors.

People often focus on the word "Hot" and forget the last word is "Sauce" and that really encompasses the bigger meaning behind the product. While the original idea of hot sauce was being hot in various degrees, today's sauce labels are as descriptive as the Food Channel's cookbook. To name a few... Honey n' Habanero, Mango Passion, Garlic, Lime Cilantro, Wasabi Ginger, Pineapple, Cranberry, Peachy Perversion, Chocolate Habanero, Mango Peach, Passion Fruit, Orange Habanero, Balsamic Blackberry, Pumpkin, Smoked Tomato, Whiskey, Bourbon, Chocolate Orange, Key Lime, Lemon Herb, and the list goes on and on.

Hot sauce is just hot?... Far from it, my cooking friends. You have a selection of flavors to enhance every meal that is only limited by your own creative imagination.

For a wide variety of Flavor Enhancing Sauces please visit the information source used for this article at

I guarantee you will have an entertaining visit that will surprise you. Check it out!!!




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Reviewed by diane Spill (Reader) 1/22/2011
Interesting read Mike, is very entertaining also. Good luck Hot Sauce Mike..
Reviewed by Ed Matlack 1/22/2011
Theres a show on TV, possiby the food channel that has a kind of cook-off every so often to decide who makes the best/hottest or whatever, hot sauce...I have to wonder how anyone can eat those that are chosen the hottest...even before they took out my gall bladder I couldn't even inhale it or I would die of heart burn...keep writin' em' & I'll keep readin' em'...Ed

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