The story of pepper is magnificent, and it is hard to say.
As we all know, the hometown of pepper is the Americas. It is a product of a great geographical discovery and one of the many gifts of the New World to the old world.
But what the world does not necessarily understand is that pepper is not an unexpected harvest among the many new discoveries of the great voyage. On the contrary, it has been the goal from the beginning. It is the object of painstaking search for a costly and uncertain voyage. It is even expected to change the world. Trade pattern.
A few hundred years later, the world has changed beyond recognition, but this is not the credit of pepper. Pepper did not become the noble table hospitality dish as the navigator expected, and failed to bring great wealth to adventurers. Pepper also failed to cause or end any war as investors expected.
几百年后，世界发生了翻天覆地的变化，但这并不是辣椒的功劳。 Pepper并没有像航海家所期望的那样成为餐桌上的贵族招待菜，也未能为冒险家带来巨大的财富。 Pepper也未能引起或结束任何投资者所期望的战争。
But for hundreds of years, it has become the best friend of the common people in various countries, and it is one of the few joys in the long era of scarcity. It has extensively changed the basic flavor and nutritional level of the daily three meals of ordinary people in the East and the West. It makes the world's hard pursuit of flavor, from identity and belief, back to joy itself.
It took less than a century from when Columbus landed in the Bahamas for the first time in October 1492, tasted them from the hands of the indigenous people in a complicated mood, and walked into the courtyards of farmers in Hunan on the other side of the earth. Peppers undoubtedly contain magic.
Westerners have a mysterious pursuit of oriental spices.
There has always been a saying that Westerners travel all the way to the East to chase spices in order to cover up the stale taste of daily meat. but it is not the truth.
This is a classic misunderstanding in the history of food, and behind it is ancient progressive ideas at work. Those who hold this concept think that the ancients were always not as smart as today's people in handling the same things. In the era of lack of refrigerators, did the ancients really endure the smelly fish and shrimps on the table every day? 
Of course not. In China, refrigerators have always been a relatively slow electrical appliance. It was popularized very late, and its popularity is not as fast as TV sets or even washing machines. As of the end of 2004, the penetration rate of refrigerators in Chinese urban households was 90%, and that in rural areas was only 16%. But you haven't heard that Chinese families have been living the embarrassing life of eating stinky meat without a refrigerator.
In fact, whether rural residents or ancient people, their daily ingredients are more fresh than those of urban residents today. Because of the limitation of preservation conditions, most of the ingredients are produced locally and eaten locally. And curing, air-drying, smoke-drying, candied, salted, soaked in vinegar, etc., are all mature food storage methods.
On the other hand, for Westerners, spices can only come from the far east and cannot be grown in the Mediterranean. The long journey makes them expensive, and they will not be easily affordable by ordinary people.
The fact is that spices are a feature of high-end diets in the eyes of Westerners, and spices have long been the protagonist of conspicuous consumption in history. The dishes with strong pepper are a sign of the distinguished class status of the owner.
Generally speaking, to evaluate whether a local cuisine is sufficiently developed, it cannot be judged solely on the level of cooking local specialties. The eclectic collection of faraway and exotic ingredients is an important indicator for evaluating cuisine. Behind it is the development of trade, the gathering of wealth, and the broad knowledge. Only a feast that gathers treasures from afar can win face for the host. 
Before pepper, the world belonged to pepper. Pepper is the spice that has long dominated the spice trade. From the 16th to the 17th century, the pepper trade accounted for 70% of the world's spice trade. 
In both the East and the West, pepper is a necessity on the table of the upper class in various countries.
In China, the earliest record of pepper comes from the Book of Continued Han by Sima Biao in the Western Jin Dynasty: "Stone honey, pepper, and black salt were produced in the Kingdom of Tianzhu." The earliest physical evidence comes from the discovery on the ancient shipwreck "Nanhai No. 1" in the early Southern Song Dynasty. Of 31 pepper seeds. In the West, the earliest physical objects of pepper appeared in the nostrils of the mummies of Ramses II of Ancient Egypt.
Pepper has the status of hard currency. During the reign of the Tang Dynasty, the prime minister Yuan Zai copied 800 shi of pepper when he was ransacked, which is about 64 tons today.
In 408 AD, Alaric, the leader of the Goths, surrounded the city of Rome. In addition to asking the Romans to hand over 5,000 pounds of gold, Alaric also asked for 30,000 silver coins, 4,000 pieces of silk for robes, 3,000 pieces of red cloth, and 3,000 pounds of pepper. 
Today, Vietnam is the country with the largest pepper production in the world, with an output of 240,000 tons in 2017, accounting for 48% of the world's pepper production.
Before the pepper, that is, before the great voyage, human maritime merchants were already very developed. The spice trade has a long history, beyond ordinary people's imagination.
Clove was found in a clay pot 4,000 years ago in Syria.  In the East, in the Eastern Han Dynasty, cloves were used to give ministers a mouthful to remove bad breath. At that time, the Chinese called the fruit of cloves and the dried flower buds of cloves as chicken tongue (female cloves) and cloves (male cloves) respectively.
The reason for the great voyage is of course not the severance of East-West trade, but that some people no longer accept the old trade pattern, hoping to directly find the spice producing areas through voyages.
On the one hand, Westerners cannot give up spices, on the other hand, spices are only produced on a few coasts and islands in the east. In the middle lies religious barriers and the insatiable Venetian merchant. How to directly communicate with the East has become the theme of the times, thus opening the era of great navigation.
Spices are strange things. Its origin is extremely special. The historical origin of pepper has long been limited to a few places along the western coast of India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Real cinnamon comes mainly from Sri Lanka. The cloves, cardamom, and nutmeg are only from a few islands in the Maluku province (Maluku) in northeastern Indonesia, where it is called Moluccas in English, and the old name is "Moluccas", which is the famous spice islands in history. .
香料是奇怪的东西。它的起源非常特殊。胡椒的历史起源长期以来一直局限于印度，斯里兰卡和印度尼西亚西海岸的一些地方。真正的肉桂主要来自斯里兰卡。丁香，豆蔻和肉豆蔻仅来自印度尼西亚东北部马鲁古省（Maluku）的几个岛屿，在英语中被称为Moluccas，旧名称为“ Moluccas”，这是历史上著名的香料岛屿。 。
Ternate and Tidore became household names in the West in the 16th century and became the objects of world power.
On May 20, 1498, the Portuguese Dagama bypassed the Cape of Good Hope and arrived in Calicut, India, fulfilling his long-cherished wish to prevent middlemen from making the difference. The first sentence of the lander he sent was: "We are here to find Christians and spices."
In 1519, Magellan set off to the west, bypassing the Americas, crossing the Pacific Ocean, and arriving at the Spice Islands in Indonesia. His crew finally completed a circumnavigation.
Earlier in 1492, the most creative Columbus chose to go directly to the west to find India to obtain pepper. To his death, he believed that he had arrived in India, but he did not find the precious pepper. In fact, the spices familiar to the old world have never been found in the new world.
Columbus got a spice that he had never seen before from the natives, and he named it aji. He took it as a local pepper and brought it back to his hometown. "The pepper here tastes far better than our pepper, and it is healthy. People here can't live without it."
哥伦布从当地人那里得到了他以前从未见过的香料，他将其命名为aji。他把它当作当地的胡椒，带回了家乡。 “这里的胡椒味道比我们的胡椒好得多，而且健康。这里的人们不能没有它。” 
In the eyes of people waiting for news in his hometown, Columbus is a big liar.
Aji tastes a lot more spicy than Indian pepper, which is actually chili. Soon the red pepper bloomed everywhere in the old world, but because it is so easy to cultivate and can live as long as it is not too cold, it cannot obtain the status of the wonder of the old world spice.
The life of pepper is not of pepper leather. The decline in the value of traditional spices is the result of the great exchange of species and the colonial era. Geographical discoveries led to a great exchange of species between the old and the new world. The great exchange of species changed the face of the world. The colonial era destroyed the origin of spices.
Facing Easterners who have been enjoying their achievements for hundreds of years, Westerners will not sit back and watch their wealth flow forever. After mastering direct trade, they began to seek direct control of the origin and production, and the era of peaceful trade was over.
At the beginning of the 17th century, the Portuguese used force and fortresses to control Sri Lanka, where the real cinnamon is produced, and began to use quotas and other means to control production and pricing power. In the middle of the 17th century, the Dutch slaughtered the Indonesian islands and completely controlled the spice islands. They wanted to destroy production according to their needs. The colonial era came, and the Southeast Asian trade era ended. The flow of world wealth has reversed. Behind the houses on both sides of the Herengracht in Amsterdam, a huge amount of wealth has gathered and won the reputation of Venice in the north. 
As the crossroads of maritime trade, the previously fertile ports in Southeast Asia became unknown wild places in the next two hundred years.
Spices have also been transplanted to South America, Africa, and other parts of Southeast Asia. The universality of origin means the end of dignity.
The spread of pepper is so fast, it only took a few decades to spread across the earth. From the perspective of the history of the species, it can be said to be an explosive spread.
On March 1, 1493, the Columbus Pinta returned to Spain. It is most likely the first ship to bring back peppers for the Old World.
Pepper arrived in Congo from West Africa in 1498.
In 1542, India had bred three kinds of peppers. Soon, chili became an important role in curry.
An Indian composer at the time, Pulandaro Dassa, composed a song for red peppers, named "The Poor Man’s Savior": "I watch you turn from green to red. The more mature you become, the more beautiful the dishes are. You are delicious, but too much of you is unbearable."
当时的印度作曲家普兰达罗·达萨（Pulandaro Dassa）为红辣椒创作了一首歌，名为《可怜的男人的救世主》：“我看着你从绿色变成红色。成熟度越高，菜肴越漂亮。美味，但你们太多了，难以忍受。” 
Between 1583 and 1598, pepper was introduced to Japan. In Japan, pepper is called "Tang Xinzi".
At the end of the 16th century, the slave trade rose, and the blacks brought peppers to North America.
Because of the explosive spread of peppers, in addition to artificial planting, there has been a lot of escape and rewilding. Nowadays, people in China believe that they have their own wild peppers in Yunnan and China is also the origin of peppers.
Genetic science finally revealed that the origin of pepper is America. The so-called native native pepper is a phenomenon of escape and rewilding. 
Chili was introduced to China in the middle and late Ming dynasty, and it was first called red pepper. The word "fan" reveals its origin. This means it came from outside the domain and came late. Generally, the species introduced in the Ming and Qing dynasties in China are often named with adjectives such as Fan and Yang. Such as tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and yam. In the Han and Tang Dynasties, Hu and Fan were generally named. For example, the predecessor crops introduced by Zhang Qian in the Han Dynasty are generally called Hu XX, such as carrots and walnuts. 
辣椒是在明末中期传入中国的，最初被称为红辣椒。 “风扇”一词揭示了其起源。这意味着它来自域外，并且来晚了。通常，在中国的明清时期引入的物种通常用诸如范和杨的形容词来命名。例如西红柿，红薯和山药。在汉唐时期，胡和范通常被命名。例如，张谦在汉代引入的前身作物通常称为胡二十一，例如胡萝卜和核桃。 
During the Kangxi period at the latest, peppers in most areas were already edible. Especially in the Southwest, there is a saying that "chili is used as salt".  "Sizhou Fuzhi" in the 61st year of Kangxi recorded: "Haijiao, commonly known as spicy fire, and soil seedlings used to replace salt."
Since then, spiciness has become a characteristic of the flavor of the Southwest region, and the owner of the word "Jiao" in the past, Huajiao, has to face fierce competition from hot peppers. Another important source of spicy flavor: eating cornel, slowly and completely withdraw.
What's interesting is that the southeast coastal areas that first introduced peppers are still not addicted to spicy food, while the inland areas continue to eat new ideas. The use of salt instead of salt is to make up for the lack of local taste, in the final analysis, it is out of poverty and helplessness. Just as the Indians feel when praising peppers, the lack of history is an important reason for the sparks of peppers. Chili has changed the basic flavor of people's tables in poor and backward areas in one or two hundred years, and it has made thick tea and light rice tasteful and full of fun. The credit is not small.
The hotness of hot pepper is not a sense of taste, but directly acts on human pain and heat receptors, leading to the release of the body's own painkiller endorphins. People living in humid and cold areas may be more comforted by the process of eating chili.
Of course, the flavor of chili lies in its unique fragrance. Whether it is fresh chili or dried chili, simple cooking methods such as frying, deep-frying or burning can make it release a striking fragrance and inject the soul into local dishes in the Southwest.
Compared with the aristocratic characteristics of traditional spices, chili has been a friend of common people from the beginning of consumption. It uses pure joy to dissolve the hierarchy and status on the table.
For the bottom layer, the important thing about chili lies in its very high nutritional value. The amount of vitamin C contained in one hundred grams of pepper can be as high as 198 mg, ranking first among vegetables, 35 times higher than eggplant, 9 times higher than tomatoes, and far more than apples and pears.
Contrary to what you imagined, although the pepper gives a burning sensation, it does not hurt the stomach. Studies have found that the more chili you eat, the lower the risk of stomach ulcers. 
It is also emotional that the new world crops such as sweet potatoes and potatoes introduced in the middle and late Ming dynasties were recorded in the records of Xu Xiake (January 5, 1587-March 8, 1641) in the gathering place of the Yao ethnic group in the mountainous area of South China. Play an important role here.  It can be seen how important the word "useful" is for communication.
In 2017, China’s pepper planting area exceeded 20 million mu, accounting for 35% of the world’s pepper planting area; the average annual output of pepper in the past three years was about 28 million tons, accounting for 46% of the world’s total pepper output; annual output value of more than 70 billion yuan , Accounting for 16.67% of the world’s total vegetable output, the pepper industry has become the largest vegetable industry in China.
Today "Lao Gan Ma" is a well-known hot sauce brand in China. Lao Ganma uses 150,000 tons of oil each year, accounting for 1/4 of the edible oil consumption in Guizhou Province. A year requires 770 million glass bottles and more than 40,000 tons of peppers.
Back then, Lao Gan Ma started from a food stall. In recent years, SiRacha chili sauce (SiRacha) was also created by Chen De (David Chen) of Vietnamese Chinese who was displaced to the United States. To this day, Chili can still help ordinary people from a humble background to change their destiny.
那时，老干妈从一个食品摊开始。近年来，SiRacha辣椒酱（SiRacha）也是由移居美国的越南华裔人士Chen De（David Chen）创立的。时至今日，辣椒仍然可以帮助卑微的普通百姓改变命运。
In 1912, the chemist Scoville invented the Scoville index to measure the degree of hotness. The method is to conduct sensory tests with real people, such as 1 million Scoville, which means that after the pepper extract is diluted one million times, no one can taste the spiciness.
However, the sensitivity of each person is different. The current method is to analyze the absolute concentration of capsaicin with a chromatograph and convert it into Scoville hotness units.
Chili is still an ingredient that keeps rejuvenating today. Its spiciness is quickly breaking the world record, and gardening enthusiasts from all over the world have followed suit.
In 1994, the king of hotness recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records was the red savina belonging to the Havana pepper with a hotness of 577,000 Scoville.
In 2006, it was defeated by India's Indian Broken Soul Pepper, also known as Ghost Pepper, 1 million Scoville.
From 2010 to 2011, the record was refreshed three times in a row. In 2013, the Carolina Grim Reaper reached 2 million Scoville. 
从2010年到2011年，该记录连续三次刷新。 2013年，Carolina Grim Reaper达到200万斯科维尔。 
In 2017, according to media reports, the X pepper cultivated for 10 years achieved an astonishing spiciness of 3.18 million Scoville.
What is the concept of these numbers? The spiciness of a typical hot pepper is about 6000 Scoville. For consumers, what level of spicy is the best?
According to the results of the experiment, consumers are just too good to be able to bear it. There is only a fine line between them. "The spicy food that everyone likes is only slightly lower than the unbearable spicy food. Everyone is pushing the limit." 
根据实验结果，消费者实在太难以忍受了。它们之间只有一条细线。 “每个人都喜欢的辛辣食物仅比难以忍受的辛辣食物要低一些。每个人都在极限。” 
This is probably the love for peppers engraved in human biological instinct.