President Rowan University on Making Hot Sauce for Scholarships - Podcast

July 30, 2018

ali houshmand hazardous hot sauce rowan university

Dr. Ali Houshmand from Rowan University joins the Craft Hot Sauce Podcast and introduces Houshmand's Hazardous Hot Sauce

Dr. Ali Houshmand is the President of Rowan University and creator of Houshmand's Hazardous Hot Sauce. All proceeds from the hot sauce go towards an emergency scholarship fund for Rowan University students. Dr. Houshmand cares deeply about the success of students across the world, and his passion comes out in all different types of work at Rowan. 

 Listen to the Craft Hot Sauce Podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts 

Music is by Freevolt from Newburyport, MA. I saw them at the Lowell Folk Festival and they made it a great time for all in attendance. You can check them out here: www.enjoyfreevolt.com/

Houshmand’s Hazardous Hot Sauce Story

Rowan University President Ali Houshmand has planted his peppers, with help from students, volunteers and alumni. Like last year, he will spend time each early morning, watering, weeding and otherwise tending the produce.

He’s willing to do a lot for his students.

In this case, the long-time educator with an engineering background was turning the jalapeños, Carolina Reapers, ghost and other peppers he planted into scholarships for those with the greatest need among the 18,500+ students at Rowan University in South Jersey.

Dr. Houshmand, widely recognized for innovative approaches to curbing the cost of a four-year degree, committed to professionally producing the hot sauce that he has gifted family and friends with for years after a waiting list grew for the batch he had auctioned off at a campus holiday fundraiser in 2016. This year, Houshmand’s Hazardous Hot Sauce is making its debut by invitation at the Fancy Food Show in New York City.

On a 40’x90’ lot about a mile from Rowan’s main campus, located a half hour outside of Philadelphia, Dr. Houshmand grows a portion of the peppers he turns into three types of Houshmand’s Hazardous Hot Sauce.

Last October, the University officially launched sales of the hot sauce (along with tee-shirts, mugs and aprons), with all proceeds from the privately funded initiative going to the Rowan University Student Emergency Scholarship Fund. Rowan sold jars at Homecoming and held the official public unveiling of the line on Oct. 24 when cast-iron-stomach competitors battled it out in “Wing Wars” at the Glassboro branch of Chickie’s & Pete’s, a popular restaurant in the Philadelphia region. They have raised about $25,000 since October. 

Dr. Houshmand, who shares the same concerns most American college and university presidents do about affordability, has introduced a number of initiatives – some in conjunction with local community colleges – to help Rowan graduates cut the cost of a four-year degree. To the best of our knowledge, he is the only president hitting the kitchen (with a professional team, staff and volunteers) to turn green (and red, yellow and brown) peppers into “green.”

Website - https://www.rowan.edu/hotsauce/

Glassboro, New Jersey




Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Maker Stories

hoots sauce co story
Bruce from Hoots Sauce Co. on fire-roasted fermented hot sauce - Podcast

November 10, 2021

Continue Reading

cottage lane kitchen story
Cottage Lane Kitchen Story

November 03, 2021

Cottage Lane Kitchen was founded by me in 2010, and it isn't only my business name, but also refers to a secret lane in Chapel Hill, NC where our family homestead was built in the 1950s. Four generations of my family have cooked and preserved spicy peppers out of love and tradition in that kitchen.

The last homemade batch of my family's spicy pepper relish was made by my Grandfather in the early 1990s. He grew chilies around the outside of the house and harvested and pickled them during my summer visits. I remember him watering the empty tin cans he buried beside each pepper plant. 

Continue Reading

row of pepper plants
A riff on a busy summer and pepper harvest season from Brian at Craic Sauce - Podcast

October 28, 2021

Normally the Craft Hot Sauce Podcast interviews hot sauce makers all over the world. This episode is more of a riff from Brian the host about some of the things his hot sauce company Craic Sauce got up this summer.

Continue Reading