We’re eating spicy curry and instant ramen then chompin’ on lemons, for science!
Spicy food lovers will already know several of the traditional ways to counteract the spiciness of certain foods. Yogurt, for example, pairs nicely with a spicy curry, and if your mouth is really burning, some swear by sipping a glass of milk to soothe inflamed taste buds.
Recently, however, there have been new rumors floating around (possibly started by our writer Japanese Yoshio, who has all the best ideas) that suggest that fresh lemon can cut the spiciness of foods, with best results achieved by simply chomping into one of the citrusy fruits following a bite of something spicy.
Now, we reckon that this probably works the same way as taking a shot of tequila, with the bitterness of the lemon juice helping to distract from everything else that’s going on taste-wise. But as for actually taking away spiciness? We were skeptical.
Luckily, our madcap Japanese staff writers were willing to take one for the team by trying this one out themselves. Let’s see how they got on…
First, to assemble the tools of the experiment.
From left to right, a spicy arabbiata gyu-don, a spicy cup ramen, and curry takeout from Coco-Ichibanya, with a spicy rating of 10. Oh, and some fresh lemons.
First, the arabbiata. Our taste-tester, while brave, wasn’t feeling confident enough to dive straight into the deep end, so he opted for the least spicy option, making sure to follow up his first bite with… a chomp on an intact lemon.
Tip for those who may be thinking of trying this at home: beware of spurting lemon juice!
Feeling that the arabbita gyu-don, with its balancing base of bland yet comforting white rice, wasn’t perhaps the best way to test the validity of the hypothesis, we quickly moved on to the spicy cup ramen, which included real chili oil as an ingredient.
A hearty slurp, and…
A quick chomp of lemon, and…
“The lemons! They do nothing!” he squealed.
Unfortunately, the experiment was deemed a failure from that point on, since our taste-taster was experiencing extreme agony and lemon-related retinal distress. However, our writer Yoshio wasn’t willing to watch a delicious Coco-Ichibanya curry go to waste, and demanded that our weeping taste-tester see this through to the bitter end. So, on we go!
Spicy factor 10 beef curry bento!
The face of a man anticipating pain:
But maybe, just maybe, the lemons might have some effect this time?!
So there you have it guys! Don’t believe everything you hear around the office water cooler, especially if it comes from Yoshio.
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