One summer day, circa 1997, my husband and I were driving our three kids and their young cousin, Josh, somewhere. I don't remember if we had nachos or Papa John's pizza in the car, but it was some order that came with jalepenos.
I nibbled on one and it was hot! Oh, my--and I can take some heat.
Ditto for Paul (back in the day, but not any more) .
All of our kids were accustomed to a "yibbit" ( "little bit") of spice, so each of them tried a yibbit of the jalepeno.
Ben, the oldest, who loves extreme sports, extreme dares, extreme anything, took a big bite and proceeded to hee-hee-ho-ho-give-me-a-drink! His eyes watered, he ate some leftover crust of pizza,
and said, "That wasn't bad."
Sarah cautiously bit a teeny, tiny bit of the skin and that was enough for her.
Steve, not one to be left out, also partook a smidge of jalepeno. Mind you, this was one jalepeno we were sharing! His eyes poured water down his cheeks, he chugged a drink, he stuffed a breadstick in his mouth to absorb the heat.
Meanwhile, I am up front saying, "Better be careful, guys."
Then Josh decides he wants in on the action.
"Can I try a hollow peanut?"
Ben said, "What? A hollow peanut? You mean a jalepeno?"
"Here," says Ben, handing him a new, whole "hollow peanut," so that it doesn't have our germs on it, he reasons aloud.
Josh holds it skeptically. "How much should I eat?"
"The whole thing!" Ben says, half teasing.
"No, Josh! Don't!" says Sarah, the voice of reason. "Don't listen to Ben, ever!"
"It won't kill you," said Stephen, honestly, "Just don't take too much."
Still staring at the jalepeno as if testing a bungie cord on the Brooklyn Bridge, Josh summons courage. I turn around just in time to see him put a bite the size of a marble into his mouth.
Lesson learned? For the answer, ask Josh : How hollow are "hollow peanuts"?