A habanero (not habañero) is an unbelievably hot chili pepper, often rated between 200,000 to 300,000 Scoville heat units. Although not eaten by most, there is a niche for habaneros from some of those who like hot food. Merely touching them can cause a strong burning sensation. Brushing contaminated hands on any other body part, particularly the face and genitals, can lead to excruciating pain. Particular caution should be made when dropping habaneros in to hot oil, as the steam that rises will cause irritation if it hits the eyes or other membranes.
Habaneros, besides their intense heat, are known for their delicate almost citrus like flavor. Many connoisseurs of hot foods prefer to select smaller, more wrinkled habaneros, as those are the ones with the most intense heat and best flavor. People who are less bold, but still enjoy spicy foods, can carefully remove the ribs and seeds of the pepper and eat the remaining flesh.