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Glossary of Chiles and Hot Peppers


Ancho

An essential ingredient in mole, ancho is a dried poblano chile. Ranging in color from green to red. Sweet, yet moderately hot. Mostly used in sauces.

Anaheim
Named after Anaheim, California and sometimes called New Mexican chiles. Long (6 to 8 inches) and narrow, green when fresh and bright red when ripe. Sweet, mild to moderately hot. They are stuffed, made into sauces, and stews. Dried red chiles are tied into ristras- decorative wreaths.

Arbol
Thin and dried. Also called Chinese hot peppers

Bird Peppers
There are dozens of varieties of Bird Peppers throughout the world. The two best known varieties in North America are Tepin and Pequin. Bird peppers are commonly reported to be the hottest chile pepper known to man. In fact, one ounce of the Tepin variety will yield enough heat for 300 gallons of salsa!

Bonney Pepper
The number one pepper of choice in Barbados. It is the base of the unique mustard-based hot sauces of the country. It is thought to be an eastern Caribbean version of the Scotch bonnet but you rarely see a yellow fruit-- they mature to red. Very hot.

Bulgarian Carrot
This hot chile has the color and shape of a carrot. It makes an attractive ornamental.

Cascabel
A rich, blood red pepper with medium heat.

Chihuacle Rojo
Originally from Oaxaca, Mexico, it is a staple ingredient in the famous Oaxacan mole sauces. Medium-hot.

Chilaca
Also called a pasilla when dried. Long, thin, and often twisted. Turns dark green to brown when mature. Mild to medium hot

Chile Caribe
The base for the popular southwestern dish, carne adovada. Red chile pods blended with water to a puree and seasoned. The dried chiles must be soaked first to rehydrate.

Chiles, Green
A variety of sizes, shapes, and piquancies, they are a staple in Southwestern cuisine. Green chile can refer to many varieties, most commonly Anaheim, Poblano or New Mexican. Before use, the skin is removed. Used in sauces, relishes, stews, and chile rellenos. (Recipe)

Chiles, Red
Green chile that is fully matured, Most often it is dried and must be soaked in water to rehydrate. Usually used ground or crushed for added seasoning or in making a variety of sauces. (Recipe)

Chile Rellenos
Green chiles stuffed with cheese or meat, dipped in a batter, and deep-fried. (Recipe)

Chilipiquin
See Bird Pepper

Chipotle
A sweet, chocolate flavored dried jalapeno pepper that has been smoked. Very hot. Used in salsas, sauces, and soups. Also pickled and canned in adobo sauce.

Cili Goronong
Malaysian pepper that’s nearly 3 inches long. Extremely hot.

Fish Pepper
The origin of this pepper's unusual name is unknown, but the red-orange pods are quite hot. Pods measure 2 1/4" long by 3/4" wide.

Grove Pepper
See Bird Pepper

Guajillo
A dried deep red chile with a tough skin, actually a Mirasol chile variety. Medium heat. It has an earthy flavor with plum and raisin tones.

Guero
Generic name for yellow chiles

Habañero
Very hot chiles that range in color from light-green to orange. Pods are red when fully ripe. Used in chutneys, salsas, sauces, and marinades

Hungarian Wax
Originally attributed to Hungary, these are yellow peppers, 4 to 6 inches long with a shiny, waxy appearance. They are also called banana pepper. They are slightly sweet, and mild to moderately hot.

Jalapeño
Named after Jalapa, the capital of Veracruz, Mexico, these small, dark green chiles have a smooth and thick skin. Hot to very hot. Can be eaten raw or roasted. Also known as chipotles when dried

Lemon Drop
Also known as ají limón, from South America with a very fruity aroma. Yellow when fully ripe.. Pods measure 2" long by ½" wide.

Pasilla
A dried fresh Chilaca chile that is medium to hot with berry and tobacco flavor tones.

Pepperoncini
Long, cone-shaped, commonly green or bright red and pickled in salads




Pequin
A variety of Bird Pepper also called Chilipiquin, Turkey Pepper , Grove Pepper, and Pring-kee-new [Rat-turd pepper]. Pods oval, less than 1" long with the smallest pods being the hottest. Grows wild in Texas, Florida, and south throughout the Americas.

Poblano
Large (2 to 3 inches wide and 4 to 6 inches long), dark-green (almost black) chiles. Rich, earthy, mild to slightly hot. Often stuffed (as in Chiles Rellenos), roasted, and never eaten raw. Known as anchos when dried.

Purple Ecuadorian
This variety is truly purple- flowers, fruit, and stems. Even the leaves have a purple tinge. The chiles mature to red and are quite hot. The plant is compact, about a foot tall, and makes a good ornamental.

Pusa Jwala
This Indian pepper is characteristic of the extremely hot, cayenne-like pods that are eventually ground into powder. Pods measure 3 3/4" long and only 1/4" wide.

Scotch Bonnet
A short (1 to 3 inches) wide (2 to 3 inches) lantern-shaped chile which is used in sauces and spice mixtures throughout the Caribbean. Colors can range from white, yellow, orange, red, and brown when ripe. Most famous as the main ingredient in Jerk Spice (Recipe) .

Serrano
Barrel-shaped, green or red, pointed at the end. its skin turns from green to red to yellow as it ages. Hottest chile commercially available in the United States. Very hot. Milder with ribs and seeds removed and when roasted. Used in fresh salsas, and roasted.

Tepin
Also called Chiltecpin, Chiltepin, Chile mosquito, Chile de pajaro, Chile silvestre or Tecpintle. A Bird Pepper variety often claiming the title as the world's hottest pepper. Grown in the mountains of northern Mexico and southern Arizona. Pods are round, 1/4" across, turns red when ripe. One ounce of this dried pepper with seeds removed will produce a detectable hotness in 30,000-50,000 ounces (over 300 gallons) of salsa!

Thai
Tiny (1 to 1 1/2 inches long, 1/4 inch in diameter) and thin, ranging in color from green to red. Extremely hot, lingering heat. Very popular in Southeast Asian cooking.

Turkey Pepper
See Bird Pepper

Yellow Emperor
From Hainan, China, where it is grown and processed into hot sauces. The pepper matures to yellow and is extremely hot. Length is 2", width 1 1/4".





Peppers of the World : An Identification Guide
by Dave Dewitt, Paul W. Bosland

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Paperback - 219 pgs (Jan 97)
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