Most of us pepper lovers do not know the differences between the peppers we consume. Most do not even know that there are different types. Most of us do not care as long as we get the desired effect of these peppers in a meal. Have you ever read a food article, or maybe a recipe and you see ‘scotch bonnet’ or ‘habanero’ and you wonder, ‘is it the same pepper’?
Peppers have been used for centuries and all around the globe for the spice and flavor they add to meals. While some people cannot stand the heat, others love the spice.
I would be mentioning a few peppers and their characteristics;
Alternate Names: Green pepper, red pepper, sweet bell pepper, capsicum
Characteristics: Relatively large in size, the bell-shaped pepper in its immature state is green with a slightly bitter flavor. As it matures, it turns bright red and becomes sweeter. You can also find yellow, orange, white, pink, and even purple varieties. With their high water content, bell peppers will add moisture to any dish. They’re also great for adding color.
Characteristics: Small and bulbous, this chile, in the same family as the Scotch bonnet, is one of the hottest on the Scoville scale. If you can get past the heat, habañeros also have a fruity flavor. They’re popular on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and in the Caribbean, where they’re used to make hot sauces.
Alternate Names:Ata rodo
Characteristics: This is the regular pepper we use in Nigeria. It also consists of yellow pepper. Most Scotch bonnets have a heat rating of 80,000–400,000 Scoville units.
Alternate Names: Black pepper
Characteristics Cameroon pepper is a more African aromatic pepper that is usually dried and grounded. It is very spicy and pungent and usually used in small quantities.
RED BELL PEPPER
Alternate Names: Tatashe
Characteristics:Bell peppers are less pungent than ata rodo and are used to add colour to food. They come in red, yellow, orange and green. The green bell pepper is popularly known as green pepper.
BIRD’S EYE CHILLI
Alternate Names: Atawere
Characteristics: Botanical info: specie C. frutescens
Uses: fresh & dried. For general food preparation – stews, soups, rice dishes, beans etc
Availability: all year round.
RED CHILI PEPPER
Alternate Names: Shombo
Characteristics: Chili Pepper can help keep one’s eyes healthy. Chili Pepper can help individuals fight infections. Chili Pepper is perfect for keeping the hair and skin vibrant and strong. Chili Pepper is perfect for decreasing blood pressure. Chili Pepper is loaded with B-vitamin components. Chili pepper is also a good source of folic acid. Chili Pepper can assist in red blood cell formation. Chili Pepper can help improve cognitive functioning.