Sam and I are working on the finishing touches of the Pepper Eater. After a final run to the hardware store, we’re back in the Stanford PRL assembling a few test Pepper Eaters. We’ve been trying different models, some with more wooden spacers, others with thinner toothed disks. We’ve found a couple of orientations that work well and have decided to make 5 of each in Ethiopia. That way, we can test the success of each design on the peppers actually used to produce berbere.
The design depicted above features thinner steel disks, of 1/8″ instead of 1/4″ as we had originally planned. This design is more effective at grabbing the peppers and drawing them in between the teeth. It is also significantly lighter than the original design, there being more wood and less metal. Since cost of production, weight, and effectiveness are some of the more important characteristics of the Pepper Eater, we see this new design as a great improvement! As we continue to work with our product and to gain feedback from pepper processors, as well as manufacturers and distributors in Ethiopia, we will continue to gain other significant insights.