Five-Alarm Chili Sauce

Via Avanova, as trustworthy a source as you'll find:

A Thai restaurant's spicy chilli sauce sparked fears of a chemical attack and led police to evacuate a busy London street.

Police closed off three roads and evacuated homes as a mysterious cloud of acrid smoke hovered over Soho for three hours.....

As the ambulance service sent in its Hazardous Area Response Team Unit, firefighters wearing specialist breathing apparatus entered the deserted streets to seek out the source.

They broke down the door of the Thai Cottage restaurant - to emerge later carrying a huge cooking pot containing about 9lb of smouldering dried chillies.

Link via Rational Review.

UPDATE: The BBC is reporting this as well, so it just might be true. Also in that BBC clip: the recipe, for the culinary terrorist in all of us.

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  • ||

    HEY! Nobody got shot or anything? No killed dogs? No boots to the head?

    *looks down, kicks pebble*

  • pistoffnick||

    A free tip for you:

    When making Nam Prik Pao or any other dish involving thai peppers, wash your hands BEFORE you use the bathroom.

  • ||

    I had a similar incident happen to me at my house, just as I returned from my favorite hot wings joint.

    No really, I swear...

  • ||

    wash your hands BEFORE you use the bathroom.

    REALLY make sure to wash your hands/mouth after eating hot wings if you expect to get lucky later that night. Especially if you want her to ever call you again.

  • Preemptive joe||

    The chicken hawks can track down a pot of peppers but can't find Osama!

  • Fluffy||

    I can envision a whole new advertising campaign for this restaurant...

    "So hot it's hazmat!"

  • ||

    Speaking of fires, anyone else hear this strangely underreported story? WTF? Maybe all the senators have to smoke in the bathrooms like high school students now.

  • ||

    Looks like somebody gots stung by something hot before this story even broke.

  • ||

    Homer: Five-alarm chili eh?
    Ned: Yup
    Homer: (takes spoonful) Hmm...1...2...Hey! What's the big idea!?
    Ned: Ohh. It's not five-alarm. Only two. Two & a half tops! I just wanted to look like big man in front of the boys.
    Rodd: *sniffling* Daddy? Are you goiing to jail?
    Ned: We'll see son...we'll see

  • ||

    My kind of restaurant.

  • ||

    "A bland, timid entry. Suitable perhaps for patients recovering from surgery."

    Strangely, also an accurate review of Bionic Woman.

  • ||

    "They broke down the door of the Thai Cottage restaurant"

    ...because they were completely flummoxed by the door handle thingy.

  • Pepperpot||

    Oi! I like hot sauce on my fish and chips and that utterly vulgar American Corn Dog. Those are fun to eat!

  • ||

    "Care for some chili? I've added an extra ingredient just for you. The merciless peppers of Quetzlzacatenango! Grown deep in the jungle primeval by the inmates of a Guatemalan insane asylum."

  • I say. Irish Elk||

    would this hot sauce be a good lube for the Iowa corn dog???

  • ||

    Elk,

    Don't cross the threads! Disaster could result!

  • VM||

    I looked at the trap, SugarFree!

  • ||

    Quimby: Good lord, this can't be happening!
    Hibbert: By all medical logic, steam should be shooting out of his ears.
    Krusty: His ears, if we're lucky.

  • ||

    While Avanova is suspect, this story is legit.

    An AP version had the wonderful headline: "Spicy chili smell leads to evacuation."

    See it here: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071003/ap_on_fe_st/britain_spicy_chili;_ylt=AgUNq8QN6ErWezRE.lO1TnvtiBIF

  • ||

    What ever happens, VM, stay alive! I WILL FIND YOU!

  • VM||

    *lubes up with Dave's Insanity Sauce*

    READY TO BE RESCUED!!!!!!!!

    Sir Lancelot! Rescue me!

  • thoreau||

    They broke down the door of the Thai Cottage restaurant - to emerge later carrying a huge cooking pot containing about 9lb of smouldering dried chillies.

    Shouldn't Radley Balko be blogging this?

    Here's my favorite Thai restaurant story: Thai waiters don't like to make my food spicy. I ask for spicy, and they'll often bring me mild. Dumb white boy can't handle it, they seem to think. Well, several years ago I was having dinner with an Asian-American friend of mine. I asked the waitress for spicy. The waitress looked at my friend, my friend nodded, and the waitress wrote something down.

    I got spicy food.

  • ||

    thoreau,

    It might not be a response you can replicate, but I drunkly replied to a Thai waitress when asked the "How spicy?" question with "Tear me up!" They did. And sold a lot of Singha Gold as a result.

  • ||

    Thoreau-I used to frequent a Thai place where the waitress came to recognize me as the only white boy silly enough to eat "thai hot" quet too lun chin. Once they get to know you, most places won't hold back.

    OTOH, I embarrassed myself at a pot luck held at a Thai Buddhist temple once. I'm usually all but immune to hot stuff. The pepper sauce they had there, though, punished me like a puppy that piddled on the rug. All the Thai folks enjoyed laughing at the white boy who ended up in the garden, looking as though he'd been maced.

  • ||

    I always make sure to ask for my food "as spicy as humanly possible," because apparently at asian restaurants, "extra spicy" means "as spicy as the mild sauce at Taco Bell."

  • Timothy||

    I have only found two Thai places in town that will appropriately punish me. I'm not a huge spicy food guy, but if I order 3 or 4/5 that should be enough to make me kind of regret it as the deliciousness makes me cry.

  • ||

    Say, "Not just farang spicy, Thai spicy." ("Farang" being Thai slang for "Westerner".) But yes, do this at your own risk. Those hazmat boys were not being entirely overcautious.

  • JBinMO||

    "All the Thai folks enjoyed laughing at the white boy who ended up in the garden, looking as though he'd been maced."

    Good times.

  • thoreau||

    What's not being reported is that the Brits weren't actually concerned about terrorism. They were just confused by reports of quality food anywhere in England.

  • ||

    REALLY make sure to wash your hands/mouth after eating hot wings if you expect to get lucky later that night. Especially if you want her to ever call you again.

    Somebody pulled the old "Tongue of flame" move.

  • ||

    Interesting point that was brought up over at BoingBoing yesterday that as silly as this story is at least they are not being charged with staging a hoax.

  • ||

    Let me get this straight:

    If you don't want to have sub machine guns pointed at you, no shirts with blinky lights, no spicy food.

    Anything else to add to the list?

  • Scooby||

    If this happened in Boston, those Thai restaurateurs would be on their way to Gitmo by now.

    I love spicy (I have several habanero plants in my garden), but Thai spicy just scares me. I've made the mistake of insisting on a "no, really spicy" green curry, and now know to order it just a little extra spicy.

  • Tym||

    Judging by the blandness of English food, they probably consider Thai food to be "Food Terrorism"!

  • ||

    Compare and contrast the reaction.

    'Fake' chemical attack in London:

    The police spokesman said no arrests were made in the case. "As far as I'm aware it's not a criminal offense to cook very strong chili," he said.

    'Fake' bomb in Boston:

    Nineteen-year-old Star Simpson was charged Friday with possessing a hoax device...

    Simpson showed "a total disregard to understand the context of the situation she is in, which is an airport of post-9/11," prosecutor Wayne Margolis said at a hearing where a not guilty plea was entered for Simpson and she was released on $750 bail. Margolis had asked for $5,000 bail.

  • ||

    "A Thai restaurant's spicy chilli sauce sparked fears of a chemical attack and led police to evacuate a busy London street.

    If this happened in the US, it would be a really cool marketing campaign for the "extreme generation".

    I can see it now....

    "Eat our hazmat chili, it is so spicy, it might kill you."

  • thoreau||

    John, where are you? We need you to argue that this Thai cook was an idiot who deserved to be arrested.

    After all, he probably looks Malaysian! You can't expect the cops to disregard reports of a chemical hazard with possible Malaysian involvement. Right?

  • ||

    But, Thoreau, what do you expect from a country that is soft on terror, has let its ally down in Iraq and is refusing to support a just invasion of Iran?

  • M||

    If chilis are outlawed, only lawyers will chill out.

  • ||

    I've had Thai-spicy.

    When I order something spicy at a Thai restaruant, the waitress inevitably says, "When you say spicy...?"

    I just reply, "White people spicy."

    If you're going through the buffer, and there's a little misspelled yellow sticky on the sneeze guard that says "Flameing Hot!!!" they're not kidding.

  • ||

    Er, buffet.

  • ||

    Er, buffet.

    Glad you corrected that, joe. Going thru the buffer is WHOLE different thing! ;-)

  • thoreau||

    John, if you're out there, I'm still waiting.

    Come on, you know you want to show up and burn some strawmen until they're as carmelized as those chilis....

    Actually, thinking about carmelized chilis makes me less interested in debating John and more interested in getting lunch. See you guys later.

  • ||

    I wouldn't expect any comments from John unless the chef involved graduated from an elite culinary school.

  • dhex||

    man thai buffet sounds like god in a dish.

    i've found a few places that would do spicy for me. oh man. it is good every once in a while.

    sometimes i just want some pad prik king without dying afterwards.

  • ||

    Yeah, you take off the lid, and it's like a warm, steamy dish of God. With squid.

  • hale||

    What's not being reported is that the Brits weren't actually concerned about terrorism. They were just confused by reports of quality food anywhere in England.

    The food's fantastic in London, for the most part. Especially the Asian cuisine. I didn't really "get" Indian food until I had curry from one of the local establishments.

  • ||

    Come on ice cream! Come on ice cream!

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