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E-Pao! EI - Umorok the hottest chilli of the world and its value

Umorok the hottest chilli of the world and its value
Ingochouba Meetei Lukram *



Umorok is the only type of chilli found in the North Eastern states of India mainly in the Manipur and some neighboring states. The local people know this type of chilli as King Chilli after its extreme hot taste. It is the hottest chilli in the world. This chilli is available mainly in 2-3 districts of Manipur in plenty.

It is believe that 100 simple chilies equal to only one Umorok. Those people who are living in the hill areas are the main producers of this hottest chilli. The size of this chilli is larger than the normal red chili and it softer than other types of chilli.

The color of this chilli is light green when immature, then yellowish before mature and totally bright red when it is mature. One of the special popularity of this chilli is its good smell. It has many economic importance and also famous for its medicinal values.

Recent years there has been a lot of research and every year research finds out more about the healthy benefits of this chili (Umorok).

Chili will clear your sinuses. After eating chillies your nose starts to run. Therefore this is great to fight off the flu or even hay fever. The hottest chilli in the world (Umorok) and after eating that for a while his hay fever has gone. There has been a lot of research done about all the health benefits of the chilli and so far more than 50 common ailments are said to be cured by eating chilli.

In the old days it was believed and used to fight of scurvy. Also used to prevent or cure: rheumatism, arteriosclerosis, toothache, stomach-ache, epilepsy, asthma, varicose veins and malaria.

They are tonic and antiseptic. Stimulate your digestive system and if rubbed on areas of your skin it will stimulate the blood flow and for these reasons have been used also to treat sprains, rheumatic pain in the muscles of the lower back (lumbago) or chilblains (sore or swollen skin)

Be careful when using because it may cause blistering or dermatitis then used over a longer period of time!

Chillies (Umorok) do speed up your metabolism and have more vitamin C in them than any other fruit. (Yes chilli is a fruit). Also it is to be noted that hotter the chilli gets the more vitamin C they contain. Apparently the red variety of the Umorok chilli from Manipur contains more than 350x the amount of vitamin C than the average orange.

Umorok powder can be use for the protection of the wild elephant in jungles?

The application of the Umorok powder with some sticky liquid to the fencing rope, can protect a home or a tent house in the jungle. When the elephant touch the Umorok applied rope they will run away from place because of its extreme hotness.

Rate of the heat produced by Umorok
There are a few different ways of measuring the heat of a chilli. The first documented way to measure the heat of a chilli is invented and created by: Wilbur L. Scoville in 1912. He used a panel of people who would taste test the chillies. The sample would be watered down up until the panel could no longer detect any heat.

The units of water added to the sample would then be rated on the Scoville scale (For instance the Umorok is rated app. 400,000 up to 750,000 Scoville units!).

High-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) technique can be use to determine the level of capsaicin (the working ingredient in the chilli causing the pain) A special measuring tool called a spectrofluorometer which can measure the capsaicin levels in parts per million. This is then translated back to the Scoville scale.

How to stop the extreme hotness of Umorok?
The rapid action is taking the plant leave called the Langthrai ( a medicinal plant). If it is not available you can use Yoghurt, milk, sour cream, ice cream or cheese etc.

DON'T DO
Drinking of the following liquids makes the burning worse: water, beer, or any other fuzzy drink. The reason for this is that these liquids will open up your taste butts and worsen the sensation of the capsaicin, the working ingredient in the chilli.

Hottest part of a chilli?
The hottest part of the Umorok is the flesh (called 'mashingkha' in Meeteilon) around the seeds and the seeds itself. Although the flesh is the hottest part with the highest concentration of capsaicin.

Some of the common reaction after eating Umorok
Sweating .. Hard to breath, Runny nose. If you eat too much you might experiencing the following: Collapsed throat or hard to breath.

Some would like to make love to their partner due to the euphoric sensation of the endorphins kicking in.

Preservation of Umorok
You can preserve this chilli by sun drying or by smoking these are the most best method for a long time preservation. But you can also preserve in other methods as follows.

You can put the chillies in an airtight container or plastic bag in the fridge, this way they will last for a few weeks.
Freeze your chillies, as suggested above, and they will last a few months.
Put the chillies in vinegar, which is a natural preservative.
Keep product out of the sun and put it in your pantry, this way it will last you for a couple of years.
Or put your chillies in oil same as the vinegar.
Hang them to dry. ( Also very nice as a decoration or create your own chilli earring! )

The higher the capsaicin level in a chilli the better it preserves. Capsaicin is a natural preservative and therefore the hotter the chilli the better it keeps.

Usefulness of Chillies (Umorok and other simple chillies)
Chillies are known to be a good source of vitamins, minerals and beta-carotene. The Capsaicin is now recognized to be an antioxidant combating free radicals in the body, and research points to its clot dissolving properties. Capsaicin rubs have been found to be effective panaceas for arthritic and other muscular pains.

In the Indian indigenous system capsicum is a valued medicine…a strong circulatory and digestive stimulant, an alliterative helping to restore normal health and a decongestant. Besides all chillies are low in fat and sodium. So don't hesitate to bite into them, they can only be good for you.


* Ingochouba Meetei Lukram, from University of Delhi, writes regularly to e-pao.net
The author can be contacted [email protected]
This article was webcasted on 18th March 2005


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