A profusion of chile peppers--some hot, some not-- from Peregrine and
McAdams Farms at the Carrboro, N.C. Farmers Market last Saturday.
I went crazy over a late August explosion of fresh chile peppers at the farmer’s market. Some were incendiary. Mouth searing. Lip-blistering. Others were sweet fruity, complex. All—OK, the ones I tasted--were delicious.
I scooped up a few dozen, stashing each variety in its own paper bag. Here's a list of the ones I brought home and their Scoville ratings. (The scale, which was invented by Wilbur Scoville in 1912, measures the “hotness” of peppers based on the amount of capsaicin they contain. It ranges from 0 for sweet Bell peppers to 16,000,000 for pure capsaicin.)
Clockwise, from the top:
Poblanos, green and red: 1,000 to 2,000 units. A mild pepper with just a little bite.
Aji Dulce, red: Looks like a fiery red habanero, but has almost no heat at all.
Habaneros, yellow and orange:: 100,000 to 350,000 units. Blistering.
Cherry Bomb, red: 2,500 to 5,000 units. Fruity with some heat, although these were mostly just sweet.
Serranos, green and red: 10,000 to 23,000 units. Favorite chile for pico de gallo.
Hungarian wax peppers, red and yellow: 5,000 to 10,000 units. Good for pickling.
Cayenne peppers, red and green: 30,000 to 50,000 units. From French Guinea, intense heat. Can be substituted for Asian peppers.
Red Savina habaneros: 350,000 to 577,000 units. A mutated habanero; searing heat; world’s second hottest pepper.
Peter peppers, green and yellow: Wrinkly, phallic in appearance, very mild. Sometimes described as ornamental.
Naga Jolokia: 835,000 to over 1,041,427 units. From India. Officially the world’s hottest pepper.
I’m trying to get up my nerve to taste this one.