PEPERONCINO DI CALABRIA Apri
Loc. REGGIO CALABRIA RC, ITALIA - CALABRIA
2 Km from REGGIO CALABRIA
Area Messina, Santo Stefano in Aspromonte, Fiumedinisi
Hot pepper is a plant (and fruit) belonging to the genus Capsicum (the same bell peppers) of the family Solanaceae. According to some, the Latin name Capsicum is derived from capsa, which means box, and owes its name to the particular shape of the fruit that resembles just a box with the seeds. Others, however, it derives from the greek meaning kapto bite, with clear reference to the spicy bite the tongue when you eat.
The hot pepper was used as food since ancient times. From the testimony of archeology we know that as early as 5500 BC was known in Mexico, present in those areas as a cultivated plant, and it was the only spice used by Indians of Chile and Mexico. In Europe, the chili pepper arrived with Christopher Columbus who brought the Americas with his second voyage in 1493.
Then introduced to Europe by the Spanish, was an instant success, but the gains that Spain was expected by the market of the product (such as that of other oriental spices) were disappointing, because the chili is well acclimated to the old continent, spreading in all southern regions in Africa and Asia, and was thus adopted as a spice as well as that part of the population that could not afford to buy cinnamon, nutmeg etc.
The fruit was so named because of the similarity in taste (though not in appearance) with pepper. The name by which he was known throughout the New World was chili and so it has remained.
The most common species of chili peppers are:
- Capsicum annuum, which includes many common varieties, including red pepper common in Italy, cayenne pepper, and the Mexican jalapeno
- Capsicum frutescens, which includes among others the tabasco
- Capsicum chinense, which includes the habanero, by the Guinness Book of Records as the hottest chilli in the world
- Capsicum pubescens, which includes the South American rocoto
- Aji pepper, which includes the so-called bishop's hat
Although few species of chili pepper commonly used in Italy, there are many kinds of cultivated plants and many methods to prepare the peppers. Green and red bell, for example, are the same plant, but the greens are immature.
The piantapeperoncino Calabria
The Capsicum annuum is a perennial shrub that, in terms of climate, is grown as an annual. The plants are in the form of high bush 40 to 80 cm (depending on the species) leaves with light green color. The flowers are white star-shaped with 5-6 petals with pale yellow stamens. The peppers can be grown on a balcony, and is sown to February, while the fruit can be harvested in summer and autumn. Should be used immediately after harvest so that they do not lose their property, but they can also preserve oil or powder (after being dried in the sun).
The main architect of the substance spiciness is the alkaloid capsaicin (8-methyl-N-vanillyl-6-nonenamide or C18H27NO3), together with 4 other related compounds, collectively called capsaicinoids. Capsacinoide Each has a different effect in the mouth, and a change in the proportions of these substances determines the different sensations produced by different varieties, as well as to their content. Capsaicin causes pain and inflammation if consumed in excess, and can even burn your skin if in contact with high concentrations (habanero chilies, for example, are collected with gloves). It is also the main ingredient in pepper spray, used as a non-lethal weapon
The hotness of the chillies is measured empirically by the Scoville scale, in degrees from 0 to 10, and quantitatively in Scoville units, based in ppm weight / weight of capsaicin and diidrocapsaicina. The sweet peppers have zero Scoville units, for example, the jalapenos are about 3,000-6,000 Scoville, while the habanero arrive at 300,000 Scoville units. The record for the highest number of Scoville units in a chili pepper was assigned by Guinness Book of Records to 'Red Savina Habanero, measuring 577,000 units. But India came the news of a chili pepper called Naga jolokia should get to 855,000 Scoville units, even though they lack independent verification. The Pure capsaicin is about 16 million units.
One of the best ways to relieve the burning sensation is to drink milk, eat yogurt or any dairy product. A substance found in dairy products known as casein acts as a detergent and remove capsaicin from nerve receptors.
Capsaicin dissolves very well in fats and alcohol, and also fatty foods or alcoholic beverages help to remove the sensation of pain. At high concentrations, as nell'habanero Red Savina or various extracts, the most effective way is to use ice as an anesthetic.