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Pepper - Habanero

Pepper - Habanero


The habanero pepper, with its terrific heat, its hint-of-citrus flavor and its flowery aroma has once again become a well-loved ingredient in many preparations including hot sauces and other spicy foods. Measuring in between 80,000 - 600,000 Heat Units, the habanero pepper is one of the hottest chili peppers around. In comparison, the jalapeno pepper ranks in with 2,500 - 8,000 units.


In Mexico, the habanero pepper is sometimes soaked in tequila or mezcal bottles for days or even weeks in order to make drinks even more fiery. Pair habanero peppers with fish and pork.


This pepper is named after the Cuban city of La Habana, known here as Havana, because it used to feature in heavy trading there. It is related to the Scotch bonnet pepper; they have somewhat different pod types but are varieties of the same species and have similar heat levels. The habanero pepper grows mainly on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, where it is now thought to have originated, though it also grows in other hot climates including in Belize, in Costa Rica, in parts of the United States, and in Panama where it is known as the aji chombo. Once the Spanish had discovered it, they spread it far and wide around the world, so much so that taxonomists in the 18th century thought it originated in China and therefore named it "Capsicum chinense" or the "Chinese pepper". If anything, this pepper's popularity is even more on the rise today.

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