I recently visited his store in Prague and I can say that I was literally captivated and surprised by the offer. In each issue of Roots, we will bring you an article on chilli in the "Burns, burns, it burns" section. In addition, in this issue you can read the following interview with Michal Jakeš, whom I met several years ago.
Interview - Chilli Guru
Jindřich Krása: Hi Miguel, we've known each other for a while now and it's not the first time we've had an interview. But this time I want to talk to you on a different topic than in the past. But I will start with a belated congratulations on the fifth birthday of the 5semen.cz store. We have agreed to work more closely together, because you are very close to chili and, to be honest, I personally do not have such deep knowledge about this crop. That's why I agreed to your offer of a series about chili for Roots magazine. But how did you even come into closer contact with these hot peppers?
Michal Jakes: So I've been interested in chili and hot peppers as such for a few years. All the while it was just like a layman and a hobby mini grower. But with the general and ever-increasing popularity and popularity of growing and consuming chili, it has kicked me and my team of employees. And we really put ourselves in the chilli to the fullest. I dare say that today we have the absolute largest selection of chillies in all possible forms in the country. Everything from the countries of origin, BIO quality of course. We have expanded our offer to include other chilli products from England, where they produce real delicacies on organic chilli farms. But our series will be about chilli, so let readers look forward to interesting information. Our Chilli Man Honza is personally available for Praguers or visitors to Prague behind the store counter in Lucemburská 44. This is a well of knowledge about the range sold.
How is it with us? Does chili have a lot of supporters and growers here, or is it still just a marginal, exotic plant?
With us, it's incredibly fast. You can find a lot on the Internet, I call them nerds (I don't want to touch anyone) who, from my point of view, are able to eat the uneatable. I mean those extremely hot peppers like Carolina Reaper, Moruga Scorpion or Naga Bhut Jolokia. So yes, there are a lot of growers in our country and people who like chili are growing every year.
In Prague this year, we even have the 7th year of the Plechová Huba event. It takes place in Futur in Smíchov and is an event for chili lovers and a competition in its eating. He who has not seen will not believe. We will be there with a stand and just like last year we are a partner of the event. I hereby invite you and the reader to a really unique and very interesting event.
Well, a hot action for me? I'll come, but I definitely don't have a tin sponge. Otherwise, our nation from Central Europe does not have many recipes for hot dishes in classic cookbooks. It is probably not only due to the climate. Do you have any idea why chili is rapidly gaining in popularity here?
It's very difficult to answer, Jindra. It occurs to me as the first internet. Thanks to this phenomenon, everyone can access information and get some of it. Furthermore, it will also be the undeniable healing effects of chili and increase the variety of cooked meals in households. It will also be a journey of people who have met dishes where chili is not missing, who have met abroad and want it at home.
What are his main unique qualities besides brutal zeal? (I would like to point out here that even radish from the garden can be too hot for me personally…)
As I mentioned in the previous answer. These are various healing properties and effects, a perfect and unique taste of both the chilli itself and the food prepared from it. It should be added that it is wrong to think that chili is just a hot and for some unbearably hot pepper. Chili is basically a pepper as we know it.
It has many levels of hotness and we will report on this in our series on chili. I will give such an example. Chilli Ancho Grande is a variety from Mexico and it is absolutely inconceivable that without this pepper, chilli, Mexican cuisine can be done. It's like imagining Czech cuisine without dumplings. Ancho Grande has a very low hotness, around 3,000 SHU. You could say it's actually a sweet pepper.
But you do not only focus on chili, but also a lot of spices…
Yes you're right. We have expanded the assortment with spices from all over the world and various mixes from it. We have 5 levels of quality elsewhere than what people buy in stores. We have everything from the countries of origin, absolutely fresh and in BIO quality. The reward for us is that Indians come to us for Nagu Masala in person. They say they don't have as good a quality in their Indian restaurant as we do. It pleases. In addition, in our store, customers can smell and taste everything, including products from chili farms in England. Of course, we provide professional advice for this.
We are also preparing our recipe and hopefully we will give it a specific form during the autumn. Simply, if you find the time, or you really want quality spices, chillies or seeds, visit us in the shop at the above-mentioned address in Lucemburská in Prague or in our e-shop. Chilliseeds.cz eventual 5semen.cz. We have a cozy shop and you will feel at home in it. May everything go according to plan and as we say in our shop, let it burn: o)))
I wish you and your magazine only the best, may he be successful and bring readers only interesting, undistorted, true information.