Hot Chillies and Peppers, what is the “Bhut Jalokia”?

Did you know the indian “Bhut Jalokia” Chilli is sold in the USA to make hot sauces in gourmet food stores?

Hot peppers are terrific way to spice up any dish. However some are sweet and some are hot. Add a ghost (bhut) pepper and your dish will be high on the heat index!

Here is a guide to some hot and sweet pepper varieties in the USA.

BELL PEPPER

Sweet Bell Pepper

Bell Peppers, which can be red, yellow, green or orange, aren’t hot peppers. They are very common sweet peppers. Since this type of pepper has no heat, its Scoville Heat Index is zero. You can cook bell peppers in a variety of different ways, however don’t expect this type of pepper to add spice to your food.

CHERRY PEPPER

cherry-pepper

Also known as pimento peppers, cherry peppers are heart-shaped and are about four inches long and three inches wide. These peppers are actually very mild, scoring about a 500 on the Scoville Heat Index. Cherry peppers are perhaps best known to be the red filling that can typically be found inside of olives.

ANAHEIM PEPPER

Anaheim pepper dry Anaheim pepper

Another mild type of pepper is the Anaheim pepper. This pepper is usually maroon in color and has a long, skinny body. While the Anaheim pepper usually has a Scoville Heat Index around 1,000, some varieties can have a rating as high as 5,000. Relative to the rest of this list, this pepper is not very hot.

JALAPEÑO PEPPER

jalapeno-peppers

The jalapeño is one of the most common types of peppers in the United States. Many people like this type of pepper because of its spicy yet not overwhelming taste. Jalapeño are usually either red or green and are about two to three inches long. Their Scoville Heat Index is typically around 5,000, however jalapeños can range anywhere from 2,000 to 8,000. These peppers, when used sparingly, add just the right amount of spicy flavor to most Mexican dishes. Many people also deep fry jalapeño which are stuffed with cheese for a tasty yet spicy appetizer.

SERRANO PEPPER

serano

The Serrano pepper is similar to the jalapeño in its look, but this pepper is much hotter. On the Scoville Heat Index, the Serrano Pepper can be between 10,000 and 25,000. This pepper is usually small (around two inches) and green in color. As a general rule of thumb, the smaller the Serrano pepper, the hotter it will taste.

CAYENNE PEPPER

cayenne

The Cayenne pepper is another hot pepper (between 25,000 and 50,000 on the Scoville Heat Index) that is popular with those looking to add heat to food. Red in color, the Cayenne pepper is generally dried and used in powder form. Additionally, this pepper has been used in natural medicines for hundreds of years due to reported healing attributes.

TABASCO PEPPER

tabasco-peppers

 

As you may have guessed, the Tabasco pepper is used to make Tabasco sauce. If you’ve ever tasted how hot Tabasco sauce is, you won’t be surprised to learn that the Tabasco pepper has a Scoville Heat Index of between 30,000 and 60,000. The actual pepper is less than two inches long and can be green, red, yellow or orange in color.

THAI PEPPER

thai

Grown in Thailand and neighboring countries, the Thai pepper is a type of pepper that can be classified as “very hot”. With a Scoville Heat Index of between 50,000 and 100,000, these peppers are sure to leave your taste buds wanting relief. The Thai pepper is one of the smallest peppers, measuring in at less than an inch. It’s used in many spicy Thai dishes at restaurants in the US.

ROCOTO PEPPER

rocoto-pepperrocoto2

While Rocoto peppers look somewhat like bell peppers, it can be dangerous to get the two mixed up. While bell peppers aren’t hot at all, the Rocoto pepper is extremely hot. Between 100,000 and 250,000 on the Scoville Heat Index, this pepper is about the size of a bell pepper but is rounder and is typically only red or green. Some people use this pepper to make very spicy sauces.

HABANERO CHILI PEPPER

habanero

Of hot peppers that are commonly used, the Habanero chili is recognized as the hottest. This pepper, which can be any color from green to yellow to pink, is usually only around three centimeters in length. However, do not let the small size fool you – the Habanero chili can pack a punch! The Scoville Heat Index for the Habanero chili can range from 150,000 to 350,000.

GHOST PEPPER

ghost

Also known as the Bhut Naga Jolokia, this pepper is literally the hottest pepper in the world. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized the Ghost pepper in 2006 after reports surfaced that this pepper has a Scoville Heat Index of over 1,000,000. If you get your hand on a Ghost pepper, be sure to be extremely careful because one seed from this pepper will have your mouth burning for up to thirty minutes.

 

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Pesi Mahuvawalla says:

    Thanks Rita for your promt response. I shall circulate your article to my Parsi and Airindians. Looking forward to more articles.(perhaps a short one on Kitchen knives.). Cheers. Pesi

  2. Rita says:

    Pesi, you are so right! Parsi Air India passengers and crew must love the tabasco sauce and chillies! I did not know it was a MUST to have Tabasco sauce on board Air India planes. Please do circulate among friends and would appreciate if they can add their experiences here.
    Best regards,
    Rita

  3. Pesi Mahuvawalla says:

    Thanks Rita for your very informative post about Chillies and their usage in USA. I love the info on Tabasco Pepper. As you know Air India flights must have Tabasco.Sauce on board (and Worcestershire Sauce as well as Coleman’s Mustard, Tomato Sauce and Maggi Sauce too as standard uplift. I’m sure our Parsi Airindians will appreciate this post.

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