Nationwide research of 5,000 Britons has revealed a heat map of the UK, with folk from Middlesbrough emerging as most partial to an extremely hot curry.
In fact, a staggering 30% of those from the North East town said they regularly devour eye-watering curries such as vindaloos, compared to a national average of just 16%.
Folk from Blackpool came a close second with 29% admitting they would always choose a vindaloo, or something hotter.
And in third place was Canterbury, where 28% enjoy the tongue-tingling delights of a fiery dish.
However, the poll, by curry kit company Boom Kitchen, also revealed a list of places where people’s palates are more on the delicate side.
And Gloucester was voted the ‘coolest’ city when it comes to the curry stakes, where 32% of residents would always opt for a creamy korma, compared to a national average of just 18%.
In second place was Wolverhampton, where 27% prefer a mild, creamy curry, and Bournemouth was in third place (265).
The study found that, overall, there are almost the same number of hot vindaloo lovers (16%) as there are creamy korma fans (18%).
Said James Doel, co- founder of DIY curry kit company, Boom Kitchen “Super-hot curries used to be for the hard-core, but they are actually now just as popular as milder curry dishes.
“We try and encourage people to experiment with the flavours and heat you can get from different types of chillies such as the Naga chilli.
“It’s all very well loading your curry up with chilli powder, but that tends to just melt your mouth off and doesn’t really add much flavour.”
The vindaloo is a traditional recipe from Goa, on India’s southwestern coast, however it was first created in Portugal, where an earlier version of the dish made its way to Goa with Portuguese explorers in the early 15th century.
On the flipside, the Korma is an anglicisation of the Urdu word qormā, meaning to “braise” with the meat being cooked in yoghurt and mild spices.
The study also found that almost half (46%) of us claim to be cooking more curries from scratch, while 18% of Brits are buying more takeaway curries than ever before,
And more than a fifth have expanded their repertoire of recipes over lockdown to include curry dishes.
TOP TEN UK CURRY HOT SPOTS
- Middlesbrough – 30% (can handle a vindaloo or hotter)
- Blackpool – 29%
- Canterbury 28%
- Dundee – 27%
- Liverpool – 26%
- Lancaster – 25%
- Leicester – 25%
- York – 24%
- Salisbury – 23%
- Bristol – 22%
TOP TEN UK CURRY LIGHT-WEIGHTS
- Gloucester – 32% (cannot handle anything hotter than a korma)
- Wolverhampton – 27%
- Bournemouth – 26%
- Worcester – 26%
- Maidstone – 26%
- Croydon – 25%
- Guildford – 24%
- Belfast – 24%
- Milton Keynes – 24%
- Southampton – 23%