Spice is nice, but complexity is key
Product developers have been in pursuit of the planet’s hottest peppers to capture consumer attention in recent years, but demand for extreme heat is taking a backseat to desire for complex flavors and specific pepper varieties.
Product developers may consider pairing peppers with cheese and yogurt-based dips and sauces, said Roger Lane, marketing manager, savory flavors at Sensient Flavors, Hoffman Estates, Ill.
“Pairing them with dairy is very common as it takes the sting out of the pepper and gives consumers a more nuanced flavor experience,” Mr. Lane said. “Chocolate also pairs well, especially dark chocolate. The floral/citrus notes in peppers complement those same flavors found in chocolate.”
“Beyond the plate, cocktails and brews with peppers are on trend, and the combination of heat with a fruity base — such as a jalapeño grapefruit margarita — is very popular.”