Food experts and bald men agree: The hottest foods are found in Mexican, Thai, Indian and Korean cuisine. We once knew a bald man who judged the quality of his Mexican food by how much his head sweat. If you're looking for food that will light you up, try these destinations.
10 spicy spots
By Barbara YostSpecial for azcentral.com
March 31, 2009
Go for the machaca, savory shredded beef cooked with jalapeños, onions and tomatoes. Add hot sauce and salsa for more kick. Served in a burrito, $3.63, and as a combo platter, $5.96.
The Italians never imagined how hot calamari (squid) could be. Here it's served in a sauce made with hot bean pesto, red-pepper powder, garlic, ginger and jalapeño. $15.95.
You can order the spicy cashew chicken, which is rated medium, but then heat it up with the addition of more hot peppers. The heat comes from peppers and also chile paste. $6.95 lunch, $9.95 dinner.
Start with the spicy seafood combination soup, and make it mild, medium or send-me-to-Bangkok-without-a-plane. The lemongrass broth is studded with pieces of scallop, shrimp, squid and catfish. $15.95.
The Theresa Special is beef cooked with jalapeños, green-chile strips and red chiles. Have it fried enchilada-style, $8.85, or over rice, $8.95.
Kashmiri chicken tikka masala becomes explosive with the addition of more hot spices and peppers. The dish is made with chicken chunks marinated in spices and yogurt, then baked in a tandoor. The masala sauce is made of spices in cream. $10.
It's a classic dish with a classic kick. Crawfish etouffee is packed with crawfish tails in a creamy base with the “holy trinity” of green bell pepper, onion and celery, $18.25. The vegetarian version replaces crawfish with broccoli and glazed carrots, $10.50.
Vindaloo is a curry dish that lends itself to intense heat. Choose vegetarian, chicken, lamb or shrimp. The sauce is redolent not only with ground red pepper but also with clove and cinnamon. If you ask for more heat, you'll also get more flavor. $11-$17.
Get your blood boiling with beef mus-sa-mun curry by ordering the five-alarm version with extra chile peppers. The curry is served with rice, and the sauce is made with ginger, potato, onion and peanuts. Also available with chicken, pork, vegetables or tofu. $9.95.
It sounds mild, and it can stay that way, but the spicy fried rice cooked in chile oil can also knock your socks off. Just tell them to keep the hot peppers coming. $8.50.