Chili is a thing that divides society into two groups. Some stay away from it, while others love it. If you are a chili lover , then you should not only taste each variety but also learn more about it. That's the only way to be a true chili expert!
Chili peppers belong to the family of the Capsicum. If we look at this genus with the eye of a botanist and in depth, we find that chili ultimately resembles genetically such crops as tobacco or potatoes.
The 5 most famous species of chili peppers
The world of chili is incredibly rich in species and varieties. That's why we've put together this brief overview. After all, it's more than obvious that you've heard of Habanero or Jalapeño. But did you know that these are just two peppers out of the 4,000 varieties in existence?
In general, we can divide all chilies into 5 groups. We'll introduce them one by one, along with their most famous representatives. Are you ready to deepen your knowledge? Let's do it.
1. Species: Capsicum Annuum
This species can be translated as annual pepper. It is the most widely used species of pepper. The best known representative is undoubtedly the classic bell pepper. The other varieties range in hotness, but are united by their characteristic peppery aroma and the juicy, firm texture of the fruit. Representatives include:
2. Species Capsicum Chinense
Despite its name, these peppers are cultivated throughout Central and South America and nearby islands. This group of chilies is characterised by its high heat level and exotic flavour with hints of various tropical fruits.
If you're keen to try some very hot peppers that have a distinctive smell, then they'll definitely belong to the Capsicum Chinense group! The most famous representatives are:
3. Species: Capsicum Frutescens
The fruits of this species usually grow on bushes and are very close together. In addition, they grow towards the sky, not towards the ground. The best known representatives are certainly Tabasco, Peperoncini or Piri piri.
4. Species: Capsicium Baccatum
These peppers are characterised by a specific flavour with notes of nuts and tropical fruits. Their heat level is medium. This makes them similar to the chilies of the Capsicium Annuum group. Aji peppers are the main representative of this group.
6. Species: Capsicium Pubescens
This species of chili is characterised by its low heat level and the specific shape of the fruit. The fruits of this pepper resemble apples or pears. This species is not very common in our area. The best known representative is Rocoto.
What is the Scoville heat scale?
The Scoville scale is used as a tool to measure the heat level of chilies. It was introduced by Wilbur Scoville in 1912 and his method of measuring has become a standard in the world of chili to the present day.
How is the heat level of chili peppers measured?
The measurement of heat level and determination of SHU is as follows: The experts make a mixture composed of the chili pepper, sugar and water. More water is then added to the mixture. Once the heat in the mixture is no longer detectable, heat level of the chili pepper is determined.
If the pepper reaches 2500 SHU, it means that the volume has been increased 2500 times before the hotness has completely disappeared. In the case of the Carolina Reaper, it has been 2,200,000 times.
An important substance called capsaicin
Capsaicin is the substance that makes peppers spicy and its presence plays a key role in determining the hotness of chili.
Deepen your knowledge
Today you know how chili is divided and how its hotness is determined. But if you are a true chili lover, you should not only know the different types of chili, but also taste them and experience their unique flavour.
Our chili products are here for everyone who wants to experience an unforgettable ride, but also for those who are only looking for a light spiciness. So combine your knowledge with practice and start tasting!