Hot Spots Along the Pepper Trail
by Kurt Michael Friese, Kraig Kraft, Gary Nabhan
“An instant classic of chile pepper lore, Chasing Chiles is the best social history of chiles since Amal Naj’s Peppers from 1992. In fact, I think it’s better—because it’s not just journalism; it has fascinating science and entertaining humor as well. Highly recommended!”
—Dave DeWitt, “The Pope of Peppers” and coauthor of The Complete Chile Pepper Book
Chasing Chiles looks at both the future of place-based foods and the effects of climate change on agriculture through the lens of the chile pepper—from the farmers who cultivate this iconic crop to the cuisines and cultural traditions in which peppers play a huge role.
Why chile peppers? Both a spice and a vegetable, chile peppers have captivated imaginations and taste buds for thousands of years. Native to Mesoamerica and the New World, chiles are currently grown on every continent, since their relatively recent introduction to Europe (in the early 1500s via Christopher Columbus). Chiles are delicious, dynamic, and very diverse—they have been rapidly adopted, adapted, and assimilated into numerous world cuisines, and while malleable to a degree, certain heirloom varieties