- The Washington Times - Friday, April 10, 2009

GAUHATI, INDIA (AP) - The “ghost chili,” the world’s spiciest chili, seems to suit her palate.

A 28-year-old Indian woman smeared its seeds on her eyes before gobbling up 51 fire-hot chilies in two minutes for an entry into the Guinness World Records, organizers said Friday.

Anandita Dutta Tamuly performed the feat Thursday, cheered on by celebrity British chef Gordon Ramsay who was visiting India’s northeastern Assam state for a television shoot for his new global food series.

The thumb-sized chili pepper was accepted by Guinness World Records in 2007 as the world’s spiciest chili. It is eaten in India’s northeast as a cure for stomach troubles and a way to fight the crippling summer heat.

The chili has more than 1,000,000 Scoville units, the scientific measurement of a chili’s spiciness. Classic Tabasco sauce ranges from 2,500 to 5,000 Scoville units, while jalapeno peppers measure anywhere from 2,500 to 8,000.

Ramsay tried a bite of the chili _ and ended up regretting it.

“It’s too much,” he shouted as he pleaded for water from a stage in Jorhat, 200 miles (300 kilometers) northeast of Gauhati, the Assam state capital.

Tamuly cried too but for a different reason.

“I felt so terrible I could eat only 51. In 2006, I had eaten 60 of them in two minutes for a local record event. But I am sure I shall make it to the Guinness World Records,” the homemaker and mother of a 3-year-old told The Associated Press.

“Ramsay comforted me saying there was no reason I should feel sad. He said my feat was extraordinary,” she added.

Tamuly has been eating the “ghost chili” _ called “bhut jolokia” by locals _ since she was 5.

“While children of my age roamed the village to look for berries, I used to look for ‘bhut jolokia’ which I took with salt,” she said.

Organizers said they would send a video to Guinness authorities to certify the feat.


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