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  • Writer's pictureThe Clayton Farm

Bahama Mamas - Scotch Bonnet Pepper

Updated: Jun 19, 2021

Scotch bonnets got their name because of their appearance. They grow in an odd, flattened shape that resembles a tam o’ shanter, or a "Scotsman's bonnet." Depending on what area of the Caribbean you're visiting, these peppers may also be called "Bahama mamas" or "Jamaican hots.

This pepper is the pepper of choice in the Caribbean—it's widely used as a hot pepper in the region's cuisine.  They are mostly grown in Jamaica, and the peppers are the main ingredient in pepper sauce, a typical Caribbean condiment, scotch bonnet pepper sauce. It is one of the hottest peppers out there, ranking side-by-side with the habanero on the Scoville heat scale. I fancy the Scotch Bonnet pepper plant so much, because not only it is hot and beautiful, but tougher than its cousin Habanero that can survive our Northern California desert winter (below freezing). They do look beat up in winter but bounce right back luxuriously in spring. Below is my 3 year old Scotch Bonnet.

You ask, how can anyone on earth use or preserve so many crazy hot peppers? It actually is pretty easy (actually took us a while to figure out)! You first make crazy hot pepper sauce or chili pepper oil for winter use, or toast them in an oven to make hot pepper flakes. A perfect way to save money, live better, and eat healthy.

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