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Chili Peppers Capsicum species - Southwest US and Caribbean

DK PublishingDK Publishing 2/07/2014 DKBooks
© Provided by DKBooks

© Provided by DKBooks

© Provided by DKBooks

© Provided by DKBooks

Southwest US and Caribbean

West Indians tend to prefer hot chili peppers for marinades, relishes, and stews. Early hot sauces mixed chilies and cassava juice; now garlic, onion, and other spices give depth to Caribbean chili sauces. In the American southwest, Mexican varieties are used in Mexican-inspired dishes, but the local New Mexican chili, used green, red, and dried, is mild. These chilies are hung out to dry in colorful ristras; once dried they are often ground and sold as Chimayo chili powder or chile colorado.

Jamaican hot - C. chinense

Bright red and squat with thin flesh, this tastes sweet and very hot. Use in salsas, pickles, and curries. 9/10

Scotch bonnet - C. chinense

Yellow-green to orange-red, similar in appearance to the closely related habanero but with a wrinkled top and flattened base. Very hot and with a deep, fruity, smoky flavor. Used in many Caribbean hot sauces and in jerk seasoning. 10/10

New Mexico - C. annuum

Bright green or a deep, intense red, this has a sweet, earthy flavor. It is roasted and peeled, and keeps well if frozen after roasting. Green is good in guacamole, tacos, and tamales; red goes into sauces, soups, and chutneys. Dried, this has rich, dried-fruit flavors. It is used for red chili sauce and other relishes. 2–3/10

Tabasco - C. frutescens

Thin-fleshed and yellow, turning orange or red when ripe, this has a sharp, biting taste with a hint of celery. It is mostly used for Tabasco sauce. 8/10

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