Member Spotlight: Curt Rohn

RedPeppersThere are foodies in every office. You know who they are. Perhaps, you’re the foodie. They’re the ones that talk about the amazing recipe they tried last weekend, or they bring in delicious treats every so often.

At Union Bank & Trust, there are two known foodies. Curt Rohn is the Assistant Vice President of Marketing and Seth Perrett is a Data Analyst at Union Bank. Both like to bring in food, such as barbecue, and share it with their coworkers. About two years ago, Seth planted his annual garden which included pepper plants. What he didn’t know was that one of those plants was not like others.

About three months later, Seth brought in peppers and handed them to Curt. The peppers were twisted and odd-looking. Seth didn’t want them so he gave them to Curt to try.

Curt took them home and chopped one up. He said the pepper was spicy when it hit your tongue, but spiciness went away just as fast. No “aftertaste or burn. He made salsa with it and also sautĂ©ed some and blended it with garlic and onions to make a schmear. He took it to work, and found that everyone enjoyed it.

Seth suggested putting the odd-looking peppers into a smoker. They ground up the smoked peppers into a powder and tried it on different foods. Their “food test group” at work really liked what they were bringing in.

Finally, they decided to test their skills at a barbecue competition using their smoked pepper powder as a rub. Curt said they had nothing but a rickety old homemade smoker that had been converted from a hotel food cabinet mounted on a horse trailer. The competition they entered was sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbecue Society. He said it had to have been laughable, because the other competitors were veterans and had fancy rigs with polished chrome.

They took 2nd place in two categories and 3rd place in another. They were amazed that they did so well their first time. He cornered one of the judges and asked why? The judge said it was because of their seasonings. The Cow Horn Pepper Company was born. Curt said they Googled the pepper and discovered its true name.
Two years ago, Curt stood in his kitchen taste testing a weird looking pepper from Seth’s garden. Today, Cow Horn Pepper Company sells their special seasonings at local stores, on line, and they cater small events with their award-winning barbecue. They have about 200 seedlings they grow each year from a local greenhouse. Their seasonings are gluten-free, sugar-free and low in salt. Curt said they work at a good pace with some busy spots here and there. He said although they enjoy the benefits of the company, they have no plans to make it a full-time job.

More information about Cow Horn Pepper Company and where to buy their products can be found here.

If you would like to be featured in the next member spotlight, please contact Linda Van Hoosen.