The interest of people in outer space has given rise to ideas like space tourism, the popularity has grown exponentially in the recent years. Leading business tycoons of the world Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson launching into space in the recent past, the journey of outer world seems to be easier now than ever. NASA of course has carried out several expeditions and experiments to see how life could be sustained on other planets. And it has indeed achieved several milestones. Besides discovering newer planets and proof of life, NASA has grown food in outer space as well. After harvesting the first ever radish crop in outer space in December 2020, NASA astronauts have now managed to grow fresh chillis inside the International Space Station (ISS), in a first of its kind. Recently NASA's Plant Habitat-04 (PH-04) experiment cultivated chilli peppers for about four months after which they were harvested and sent back to Earth. But guess what? Before sending them back, the crew on board the ISS tried to make some yummy-looking Tacos with the fresh chillies. Yes, tacos with space-grown chillies!   

Astronaut Meghan McArthur took to Twitter to share some pictures of the delicious Tacos that the crew enjoyed. Calling it 'Friday Feasting', McArthur wrote, "We got to taste red and green chilli. Then, we filled out surveys (got to have the data). Finally, I made my best space tacos yet." She went on to explain how she used Fajita beef, rehydrated tomatoes and artichokes and freshly grown Hatch chillies in the Taco filling. Take a look at the pictures:

 The Mexican treat indeed looked delicious, doesn't it?

The chilli peppers had been growing in space for the last four months. Sharing another picture of the chilli, the Twitter handle of ISS called it ‘one of the most challenging station plant experiments to date.’ As per an earlier statement of NASA, reported by Hindustan Times, the experiment is aimed at exploring ways to sustain explorers for missions to destinations beyond low-Earth orbit including Mars. Such missions may last months and even years with limited opportunities for resupplies of food.   

Since the crew depended on packaged foods, which may degrade in quality, they won’t supply optimum nutrients to those on mission. Thus, if astronauts can consume freshly grown produce, they can have a healthy diet on such long missions and a variety of food too. NASA also revealed that since 2015, astronauts have grown and eaten 10 different crops on the space stations. It also said that peppers were chosen as they are easy to grow and contain good quantities of Vitamin C. 

Many space enthusiasts on Twitter were obviously elated by the news shared by NASA. Take a look at some of the reactions: