What pepper would you fire-eaters (I say that fondly) recommend to add to recipes a child would eat that will give the recipe some zing and maybe introduce them to hot peppers? Maybe like hotter than an anaheim but not jalapeno/cayenne hot.
Really Oz? You know I am a mater-head LOL. I love making gumbo, pasta sauces, homemade bbq sauce and relishes but I have a 4 year old grandson and some little god kids so when they are here I have to make the watered down versions. Kinda like watching network TV :)
I wouldn't tone it down too much for them. We watch our grandkids a lot while their mothers are working, and I've found that even the little ones soon learn to like hot chiles.
They've all started wanting to share my garden salsa and chips when they're as young as 4 or 5, and I've got a grandson who's not quite 3 now who'll ask for a bite, say "hot", drink a sip of water, and then ask for another bite. I make my salsa pretty hot, too.
I think capsaicin is good for everybody, healthwise - even kids.
In some parts of Mexico, people eat food seasoned with hot peppers all their lives starting as little kids. In other parts of Mexico, hot chiles aren't used much.
I've read that in the areas where they eat lots of hot peppers, both arthritis and stomach ulcers are almost unknown. In the areas where people don't, those problems occur at about the same rate as in the U.S.
That makes sense to me, and it's certainly worth a try - especially since I like hot food anyway.