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A to Z of Chillis!

A to Z of Chillis!

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Do you love Hot Sauce? Learn about the A to Z of chillis whose variety of flavours and differing SHU (Scoville Heat Units) help create them. From Banana Chills to, Fatalii Chilli Peppers or the World Record Holder for the World's Hottest Chilli: The Carolina Reaper.

  • Apollo - we start with the new kid in town - bred by “Smokin’ Ed Currie” from the legendary Puckerbutt Pepper Company - this new pepper is apparently 2.5 million to 3 million Scovilles - and therefore unofficially the hottest chilli pepper in the world. 
  • Banana - A mild chilli which is typically bright yellow, but matures to green, red or orange. Medium sized - it’s tangy with a slight sweetness and around 500 Scovilles of heat. Buy Banana Pepper sauces made by Miller’s Kitchen here.
  • Chipotle - defines the Mexican technique of smoking and drying fresh Jalapaneo peppers. Often used as a seasoning as well as in sauces - most famously the adobo sauce.  Buy Chipotle products made by La Chipotlera in Spain here, who created Europe’s only Chipotle oven.
  • Datil - a variety mainly cultivated in the historic town of Saint Augustine (with conflicting stories that it arrived either from Chile or Mallorca in the 18th century locally) - where there is a yearly Datil Pepper festival. Pods are a yellow-orange around 3 inches long and can reach up to 300k SHU. Buy Dat'l Hook Ya Hot sauce here.
  • Elephant’s Ear - (Slonovo Uvo) - A paprika type of low heat pepper - descendants of peppers from Central and South America - but predominantly cultivated in the Balkans. Named after the flattened shape achieved when fully grown that resembles an Elephants Ear.
  • Fatalii - From central Africa the fatalii has a citrus flavour and fruitiness with the heat expected from it’s relative the Habanero. Buy Angry Goat Pepper Co’s Fat Alli Hot Sauce here.
  • Ghost Pepper - (Bhut Jolokia) originally from North Eastern India - an early record holder at the hottest chilli in the world in 2006 - at over 1 million SHU. With Red, Yellow, White, Orange and varieties. Get Melinda’s Ghost Pepper Steak Sauce here
  • Habanero - Named after the Cuban city of La Habana with a Scoville Heat Unit of 100 - 350k units. Typically they are small 1 - 2 inches wide and begin green, ripening to orange or red. Today they are mostly cultivated in the Yulcatan peninsula in Mexico (where it is often soaked in Tequila or Mezcal), but also popular in Costa Rica and Belize. Buy Sauce Bae’s Habanero based hot sauce here.
  • Italian Long - a very mild pepper (even less hot than a Jalapeno) these (you guessed it) long, red peppers are popular in Italian cuisine - and so are perfect chopped fresh on top of pizzas and pastas, ripening to a rich red colour. 
  • Jalapeno - This hugely popular chilli pod grows up to 6 inches long, and begins green but if left on the plant will ripen to a sweeter tasting red (the Huachinango). Named after Jalapa the capital of Veracruz in Mexico. Often seen as the entry level for hot chillis - these range from 2500 SHU to 8000 Scovilles. Often packing more vitamin C than an orange, you’ll find them as a base to many sauces, but also great pickled or candied.  Buy Horseshoe Brand’s Kiwi & Jalapeno Hot Sauce all the way from Hudson, USA here.
  • Komodo Dragon - was born in the UK and made popular when stocked in Tesco by grower Salvatore Genovese. It’s heat ranges from 1.4 million to 2 million scovilles. That’s around 175 times hotter than a Jalapaneo. 
  • Lemon Drop (Aji Amarillo) Peru’s most popular Chilli. Savir Foods in Texas make this delicious and highly unusual Savir Lemon Drop Hot Sauce available here
  • Moruga - a type of Trinidad Scorpion bred in the village of Moruga. The first chilli to be tested at over 2 million scovilles in heat - and available here in Karma Sauces Funken Hot Yellow Moruga Hot Sauce
  • Naga - The Naga Chilli hails from North East India and Bangladesh - where it is often eaten raw as an accompaniment to food. In 2011 the Naga Viper was named the hottest chilli pepper in the world by the Guinness World Records.  - Try the Naga Chilli Ketchup from Dipp’d here
  • Orange Thai - (Prik Leung) These chillis ripen in late summer to a unique bright orange - and are part of the variety that belongs to the Sonanacae or nightshade family. Thin in shape and ideal for growing in pots - they range in heat from 50k-100k SHU.
  • Poblano - a pungent chilli from the Mexican city of Puebla. Deep green, almost black they are usually eaten fresh or dreid as red chillis to make anchos. The aroma of dried plums or sweet liquorice mobines with nuts to make the famous “Mole Poblano” sauce. Try Radiation Therapy’s El Gran Verde Sauce which includes Poblano Chilli Peppers here.
  • Quintisho - from Bolivia is a unique ¾” round hot pepper, which resemble a cherry tomato and can be either yellow or red. 
  • Reaper - Or the Carolina Reaper This gnarly bumpy pepper was a cross between the Habanero and the Naga Viper chilli and has a small pointed tail. It’s official rating as the world’s hottest chilli has a rating of 1, 641,183 SHU. A labour of love which became legendary in the Chillihead community, try it in the Reaper Squeezin’ sauce made by Ed at the Puckerbutt Pepper Company (their available hottest sauce - 92% Carolina Reaper) available here.
  • Scotch Bonnet - Get the Scotch Bonnet Hot Honey from Wilderbee here.
  • Trinidad Scorpion - a superhot pepper but with a large range of heat - usually over 300k SHU. From the caribbean - the chilli is named after it’s scorpion like tail. Find it used to great effect in Karma Sauce’s Scorpion Disco Hot Sauce, as featured in Hot Ones here.
  • Utri Hot Peppers - Brought to the US in 1909 from Hungary, this is a tapered chilli and was named after Rosie Utrie who cultivated it. 25-30k SHU. Can be ground to produce a spicy paprika when dried.
  • Vietnamese Tear Jerker - part of the Capsicum Frutescens - meaning bushy. Great for the garden or planters and grows up to 48 inches tall. Range from 5k-30k SHU.
  • Wild Lombok - a Cayenne style of chilli from Indonesia’s Lombok Island. A long red chilli, with plants growing up to 3 feet tall which can harvest several hundred pods each - the largest of which may get to 7 inches long.
  • Pepper X - Another superhot from Ed Curry - this came after the reaper and a pre-curser to his new Apollo Chilli - this pepper comes in hot at over 3 million scovilles. Known for featuring in The Last Dab sauce, made famous on Hot Ones Wing Tasting You Tube Show, where celebrities taste increasingly hot chicken wings doused in sauce - buy sauces from Puckerbutt Pepper Co in the UK here.
  • Yukari Bakan - A Turkish Chilli, which is very high yielding variety with a nutty flavour. Yukari means “Gift of God” and Bakan means “Overlooking”. Fruit grows in clusters of 10 to 12 pods, which make for a stunning display.
  • Zimbabwe Black (Birdseye) - An annual plant - with dark purple, almost black fruits and purple foliage and contrasting white flowers, compact in form only growing to 30cm, makes this chilli perfect for growing indoors. A mild to medium chilli with thin walls, which makes it perfect for drying.