St. Patrick’s Day is March 17.
When you think of the green emerald isles of Ireland, you don’t normally associate it with peppers, however, Ireland has had its fair share of a run-in with peppers.
- In 2014, Air France was forced to make an emergency landing in Ireland when a shipment of peppers set off the plane’s fire alarm during flight.
- The Carolina Reaper pepper made big headlines in the local Ireland newspapers when it first went on sale at the local grocery stores in the summer of 2016. It was part of their annual Big Grill Fest which showcases award-winning chili and hot wings and also the “Last Man or Woman Standing” contest where the spicy pepper tests 20 participants' tolerance levels. Ireland introduced the sale of the Komodo Dragon Pepper at local stores the year before.
- Much like hot sauce is becoming the most popular condiment in America, spicy condiments are also making their mark in Irish cuisine. Jalapeño Pepper Relish is a popular spread in Ireland that is used to spice up sandwiches, crackers, dip, and other snacks. Ireland’s own Guinness Beer Factory has even come up with a Guinness Chipotle BBQ Sauce where it adds Chipotle peppers to a thick and bold sauce to use on chicken and hamburgers.
- In 2013 the “spice bag” went viral in Dublin, Ireland. What is a “spice bag”? Everyone on Twitter and Facebook was obsessing over this bag that was created to attract the younger generation and those who loved to eat their food “on the go”. The “spice bag” also known as the “spicy bag” or “hot bag” was a paper bag filled with chicken, chips (french fries), and a mixture of red and green chili peppers. The bag even won an award in Ireland as “Ireland’s Favorite Takeaway Food”.
- The use of pepper spray, even in the form of self-defense is against the law in Ireland and can carry a sentence of up to five years. Many people that live in Ireland are coming up with their own creative ways to dance around this law by carrying plastic bags of hot ground pepper with them, a spray bottle with a mixture of peppermint oil and alcohol, and even carrying a quart of whiskey to throw in the assailant’s eyes.