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I ate a Dunkin' Spicy Ghost Pepper Donut, and here's what happened

Can my my taste buds survive a run-in with one of the world's hottest peppers?

This Twin Peaks tapestry was the perfect place to eat my ghost pepper donut.
Amanda Kooser/CNET

I like spicy things. New Mexico green chile. A "hottest hot sauce" developed by GE. And now Dunkin's Spicy Ghost Pepper Donut, a limited-time creation aimed at the Halloween market.

"A deliciously daring donut that delivers the heat with every bite, the Spicy Ghost Pepper Donut is a classic yeast donut ring, topped with a strawberry flavored icing that features a bold blend of cayenne and ghost pepper, and finished with red sanding sugar for a sizzling look," Dunkin' said in a statement on Wednesday. 

Yes, please, said I.

These are the culprits, Dunkin's Spicy Ghost Pepper Donuts.

Amanda Kooser/CNET

Ghost peppers rank among the world's hottest peppers, though the aptly named Carolina Reaper currently holds the crown when it comes to the Guinness World Records. I've grown ghost peppers. I've nibbled on ghost peppers with a mix of caution, awe and fear. I have no desire for anything hotter than that.

My genuine reaction to eating a ghost pepper donut: a mix of disbelief, amusement and enjoyment.

Amanda Kooser/CNET

Despite my spicy-foods bravado, I'm secretly a lightweight. My Midwestern, corn-raised palate begs for mercy when I reach for the Tapatio. But I do it anyway because I crave the burn, the adrenaline, the rush of feeling alive.

And so I ate the hell out of that ghost pepper donut. While standing in front of the Twin Peaks tapestry in my office.

The taste started as classic yeast donut, a light and fluffy sensation of sweetness. I knew immediately this wasn't a normal version of the fried confection. The heat kicked in quick, building with each bite while the strawberry flavor lurked like a shadow in the background. 

My nose ran. I got a little red in the face. Five minutes later and I could still feel the lingering sensation of the pepper everywhere from the tip of my tongue to the back of my throat to some unknowable place I assumed was the bottom of my esophagus.

The donut was sneaky, but not dastardly. It didn't wreck my stomach like GE's devilish hot sauce. My intestinal tract won't pay the price for my peppery pretensions. 

If you're a heat hound, this donut will be but a mild diversion from your fiery food pursuits. If bell peppers are more your speed, you might get a thrill from exploring the spicier side of sweets.

The ghost pepper goodies will be available at participating Dunkin' locations in the US until December. 

I still have one Spicy Ghost Pepper Donut left. I think I'll save it for happy hour tonight with a French's Mustard Beer.