About 9000 years ago, the chilli pepper was born somewhere in central-east mexico. The plant had a natural defense system (a chemical called capsaicin) to avoid being eaten by mammals – but some mammals didn’t quite get the memo. Fast forward to today, and the chilli pepper becomes a pantry staple across the globe, adding its signature heat to condiments, curries, sauces, marinades, and more!
The First Hot Sauce
Once the chillies found their way into the food culture of ancient Mexico, people started experimenting. They added water to crushed chilli peppers and thus created the world’s first hot sauce. They did not have much else to add to the condiment until European explorers arrived in 1492 with spices, oil, and new vegetables. Chillies were an incredible resource for trade – they were hotter and cheaper than black pepper, and grew in a wide range of climates. Soon, the crop spread across the globe and became a beloved ingredient of a huge variety of sauces. Today, almost every world food culture has its own hot sauce.
The First Hot Sauce As We Know It
Bottled red chilli sauces featuring cayenne peppers and jalapenos emerged in the United States in the 1800s. Edmund Mcilhenny, the inventor of Tobasco, became the first to popularise red chilli sauce to the average consumer. Hot sauces have seen incredible innovations in terms of flavour, heat, and packaging since then.
The New Age Hot Sauces
Chilli sauce has been nothing short of a cultural phenomenon since the late 2000s. The newfound chilli obsession led to an international tussle to breed the hottest chilli peppers in the world. The Indian Bhut Jolokia enjoyed its #1 spot in the hall of flames for 4 years, until it was dethroned by the Trinidad Scorpion Butch T pepper in 2011 and the Carolina Reaper in 2013. However, Bhut Jolokia sauce is still revered as a deadly delicacy across the globe.
With Beyoncé’s iconic lyric ‘I got hot sauce in my bag, swag’ and web content like Hot Ones, this fiery condiment has become a beloved part of pop culture. Brands from around the world have made a dent in the global market with signature hot sauces like Cholula and Sriracha. However, India – despite its rich chilli culture of chutneys, pickles, curries, and more – did not have a hot sauce to call its own.
The Future Of Hot Sauce In India
As the largest producer and exporter of chillies in the world, India deserves to be on the map for its own signature red chilli sauce. Naagin Original Indian Hot Sauce is the first hot sauce to fit the bill. Featuring Sankeshwari and Bhavnagri chillies from Maharashtra, Naagin Original Indian hot sauce is a red chilly sauce made for the Indian palate. The extra-hot Naagin Bhoot hot sauce features Bhut Jolokia chillies from Assam. Young Indian consumers are increasingly looking to buy Indian hot sauces online, and with their options increasing by the day, it’s fair to say that a hot sauce revolution is afoot!
Learn more about Indian hot sauces, red chillies, and good food – along with news on new products, events, and giveaways – on our Instagram page, @naaginsauce.