Poblano ~Appearance: thick-fleshed, shaped like a bell pepper with collapsed sides tapering to a point; 3" to 5" long, 2" to 3" wide near the stem; grows dark green and becomes dark red when fully matured. ~Flavor: smoke-roasted and earthy with full, green flavor. ~Firepower: tropical; a comfortable "3" on the heat scale. ~Best uses: roasted and peeled in casseroles and soups and sauces; stuffed for chiles rellenos.
Anaheim (New Mexican) ~Appearance: long, smooth and bluntly pointed with medium-thick flesh; 5" to 7" long, 1" to 2" wide; glossy green, orange-red or bright scarlet. -Flavor: clear-cutting, sweet, earthy flavor. ~Firepower: lukewarm; ranges between "4" and "2" on the heat scale. ~Best Uses: in most Southwestern dishes including beverages, sauces, salads, stew chilies rellenos, tamales, casseroles, dressings, candies and desserts.
Note: dried crushed red New Mexican and Anaheim are commonly sold as crushed red pepper flakes; Anaheims are milder than New Mexican and are often sold whole or chopped in cans as generic "mild green chilies".
Cayenne ~Appearance: long, thin-fleshed, sharply pointed pods, either straight or curled at the tip; 6" to 10" long, 1" wide; ripens to brick red. -Flavor: acidic and tart (also exudes smoky undertones when dried). -Firepower: incendiary; a dangerous "8" on the heat scale. -Best Uses: fresh in salsa or salads; dried and crushed in Creole dishes or whole in Asian stir-fry dishes.
Note: dried red cayenne is commonly ground into a spice known as cayenne pepper or processed into hot pepper sauces such as Tabasco; in world commerce, dried cayenne pods are known as Ginnie peppers.
Serrano ~Appearance: torpedo-shaped and thick-fleshed, but longer than jalape¤os; 1" to 3" long, ¬" to «" wide' grows dark green and usually ripens to red, but sometimes brown, orange or yellow. ~Flavor: pleasantly acrid flavor with clean, biting heat. ~Firepower: blazing, but less explosive than de arbol; a low "7" or high "6" on the heat scale. ~Best Uses: fresh in salsa; roasted in sauces; pickled with carrots and onions.
Pasilla (Chilaca) ~Appearance: long, cylindrical and furrowed; over 6" long, 1" wide; grows dark green; ripens to dark brown. ~Flavor: raisin-like aroma with sweet berry overtones. ~Firepower: tepid; an unobtrusive "3" on the heat scale. ~Best Uses: dried or powdered in sauces or moles such as guacamole.
Note: in California and northern Mexico, fresh and dried Poblanos are often mistakenly named Pasillas.
Vegetarian Gourmet Spring 1995
Your TYPES OF CHILE PEPPERS 1 is ready. Buon appetito!
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