Can’t Escape the Spice

This home assignment, we were able to visit some amazing places. Some of these places were historic, such as museums and helped us bring the American History requirement of homeschooling alive. Others, while, historical, were just plain fun. One of those visits was to Avery Island, Louisiana.

Avery Island, located in Southern Louisiana, has so much to see and do. It is not only a nature preserve, but also the home of the McIlhenny Company, makers of the famed red “Tabasco” Sauce (and other sauces too). We had a great time visiting the historical museum and visitor center, the Tabasco factory, and the Jungle Gardens, just to name a few things.

Joe (loving all things chili) was enthralled with the process of how they make Tabasco sauce. First, the McIlhenny Company raises their own peppers. They then smash those peppers into a paste, mixed with salt. This mash is then aged 3 years in oak barrels before it is finally blended with vinegar and salt to make the final product. They have been making this sauce since 1868! Poor Joe just stood and stared through every observation window in the factory like a kid in a candy shop.

Our country is known for spicy food, and a spicy paste, made from red chili peppers, garlic, and onions. This spice paste is used as a condiment on almost everything. It also is unbelievably spicy. Each member of our family has been exposed to this spicy paste, to one degree or another. Needless to say, Joe and I were very curious to see how the kids would handle sampling fresh Tabasco sauce at the Tabasco factory. The verdict? They loved it! I guess we just can’t get away from spicy things.