Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Hot Peppers

We always grow hot peppers.

We enjoy watching them grow, then eating them with just about everything.
Here is one of its many uses.

The young African general Hannibal is mainly remembered because he trekked over the snow-capped Alps with elephants. Hannibal came from Carthage, a North African city in an area near modern Tunis. Romans sacked his city and killed his beloved father. Hannibal swore that he would avenge his father's death. Since the Romans could repel his attack if he arrived from North Africa by a southern sea route, Hannibal decided he would surprise the Romans from the north. That meant taking an almost impassable path through the Alps. In 218 B.C., Hannibal took ninety thousand infantry, twelve thousand cavalry, and about thirty-six African elephants through Spain, across the Pyrenees Mountains, into the impregnable and bitter-cold Alps. Herbal legend has it that powdered Cayenne pepper was one of Hannibal's survival techniques. Being North African, Hannibal already knew that cayenne pepper tea increased internal circulation and created a sensation of warmth. His second survival technique was a tip he learned by watching the Spanish mountain people who had joined his forces. To prevent frostbite, they sprinkled powdered Cayenne pepper inside their boots. This kept them warm.
From Ancient Healing Secrets by Dian Dincin Buchman

There you have it.
The lowly pepper plant changed history.

No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, no culture comparable to that of the garden...But though an old man, I am but a young gardener. Thomas Jefferson