Habanero Chiles Whole
Habanero pepper is a very hot chile pepper that is a favorite among people who enjoy spicy food. Among the most common chile peppers, it’s the spiciest and one that adds a brilliant heat to food (and drinks) without burning your taste buds. You’ll often find habanero incorporated into sauces and salsas, though the whole or sliced pepper is also used in some recipes. Use caution when cooking with habanero because it is a fiery little thing.
What Is a Habanero Pepper?
A habanero (pronounced ha-ba-NAIR-o) pepper is a small, hot, chile pepper. It’s grown in Mexico and other parts of Latin America as well as in the United States. The habanero pepper is short and squat with thin skin and is usually an orange or red color.
Since it’s extremely hot, a habanero pepper is usually not eaten whole. Instead, it’s widely used in making salsas, sauces, and salad dressings, and it’s used as an ingredient in bottled hot sauce. It’s sometimes mistaken for the Scotch bonnet pepper that it resembles and which is equally hot.
How to Cook With Habanero Pepper
When handling habanero, wear gloves and be careful about squirting pepper juice while cutting. Habanero pepper can be grilled, sautèed, or roasted. Roasting brings out more of its fruity flavors and mellows the heat somewhat, making it a favorite cooking method.
Due to its heat, habaneros are generally added sparingly to recipes. The stems, seeds, and white pith are often removed to reduce the heat. Recipes typically call for finely diced habanero and just a single pepper (or less) will spice up an entire dish. Never use more than the recommended amount of habanero or you’ll throw the flavor of the dish out of balance. When cooking for others, make sure they enjoy habaneros—because even a little is too hot for many people.
Surprisingly, mango is one of the best flavor pairings for habanero, so you will see the duo in a number of recipes. Apricots and peaches are also common fruits matched with habanero. Habanero pepper can spice up drinks, too. Primarily used in tequila cocktails, the whole pepper can also be used in a quick infusion to create spicy vodkas.
1 lb tub