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Chiltepe • Don’t Let the Tiny Size Fool You

Written by Luisa Davis on . Posted in food

chiltepe, chiltepe guatemala, chiltepe pepper

Chiltepe peppers are the perfect addition to any recipe if you are a spicy food lover. They are tiny in size but much spicier than a standard Jalapeno pepper. Moreover, they offer a completely different eating experience than you would have with similar products.

Chiltepe has some benefits and uses that are unknown to most people, but once you learn how to introduce them to your diet and prepare them properly, you will never stop eating them. Like other chili peppers, they can be dried and chopped and used as condiments with oregano and garlic. They can be eaten raw, sundried, or pan-fried, and they are an essential ingredient of the mighty Guatemalan hot sauce!

Chiltepe peppers are relatively easy to grow,  even for first-timers. With some patience and a bit of planning, you will be able to add your homegrown peppers to your dishes! If you love to experiment, you can add them to cheeses and ice cream, or pickled for jams and sauces. Let’s have a look at the best uses, recipes, benefits, and characteristics of this tiny but spicy pepper!

The Many Benefits of Chiltepe Peppers

Chili peppers have been known to cure and prevent colds due to the nutrients and vitamins they contain. Chiltepe peppers are incredibly rich in capsaicin, a compound that is responsible for the spiciness of these vegetables. This nutrient has been proven to be antibacterial and analgesic, which helps to prevent common flu and reduce the symptoms of colds.

Moreover, 100g of raw chili peppers contain over 240% of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin C. This compound is a water-soluble antioxidant, which helps fight free radicals and regenerate damaged cells. Through moderate but regular consumption of Chiltepe, you will see an improvement in the health of your immune system in no time.

Among other nutrients, Chiltepe seeds are a great source of Vitamin A, potassium, manganese, and flavonoids such as beta carotene and lutein. These properties make the Chiltepe pepper one of the best additions to your diet, especially if you are looking to lose weight or feel healthier. They can improve the well-being of the digestive system and can speed-up metabolism.

Aside from supplying all the vitamins that you need as part of a healthy diet, these peppers can help you burn calories and improve the speed and quality of the digestive process. They are also perfect for reducing pain derived from migraines, inflammations, and infections. When complemented by green leaves, tomatoes, and peppers, they will show results in no time.

growing peppers, growing hot peppersIf you are trying to fight a small infection, Chiltepe peppers and garlic cloves should be an essential addition to your meals.

Information to Grow Your Chiltepe Peppers

Chiltepe, or Chiltepin peppers, are some of the smallest chili variety on the market. However, they are incredibly spicy for their size. They are as much as 30 times spicier than a standard Jalapeno and range between 50,000 to 100,000 on the Scoville scale. Due to their physical characteristics, they are also bird eye peppers, and they compete with the garden bird pepper (or Thai peppers) in spiciness.

The Chiltepe variety originates from the U.S., but it can be found natively in Central and South America as well, where they grow wildly in several locations.

How to Grow Your Chiltepe Peppers?

If you are looking to grow your own peppers, Chiltepe seeds can be easily found online or in your local shop. Seed germination can be challenging and require some time and care. Keep them moist and warm from the initial weeks until the seeds start to germinate, which can take up to a month. They are better planted during warm months or in greenhouses in winter and spring.

If you plant the seeds under a nurse plant, they will be able to grow up to 10 feet tall. Make sure they receive enough sunlight but, if you live in a warm climate area, don’t leave the plant under direct light for prolonged periods. Chiltepe plants are frost-sensitive and can suffer damage from low temperatures and snow. However, by pruning away the winter damage, they can live for several years. You can harvest in September or October.

Cooking with Chiltepe

Here there are some ideas that you can easily try out during your cooking time at home. However, if you like to experiment with different ingredients, you should know that Chiltepe peppers offer a completely different eating experience than other peppers.

hot pepper recipe, chili pepper recipe

As we have seen, these tiny peppers are just as spicy as a garden bird pepper and 20 times spicier than Jalapenos. Multiple Chiltepe peppers can fit into the size of a coin, so be mindful not to overdo them in your recipes! Chiltepe is incredibly spicy during the first moments of ingestion, but the heat fades down very quickly. Unlike Ghost peppers, the spiciness does not linger.

How Can You Add Chiltepe Peppers to Your Recipes?

Sun-drying these peppers is the preferred method of preparation for many users. With this process, you will have a ready-to-use ingredient for addition as a condiment to any of your dishes. Moreover, this procedure allows the Chiltepe peppers to keep their spiciness and flavor in full.

For a different experience, pickle your Chiltepe and add them to sauces. It will create a particular condiment for salads and fish dishes. If you are a Latino flavors aficionado, Chiltepe is perfect for adding in Spanish cheeses, yogurt, and desserts. By adding some lime and tomatoes, this will give your dishes a Mexican and refreshing taste!

For quick dishes, Chiltepe peppers jam or jelly can be added to nachos and tacos to spice up the mild guacamole or cream flavor. You can easily add some of these peppers in shrimp or prawn ceviche for an authentic Central American taste. In limited quantities, they are perfect for using in party foods, as they can bring out the flavour of otherwise bland dishes.

Chiltepe Guatemala

Guatemala is home to some of the spiciest variety of chili peppers worldwide, and Chiltepe is one of them. Chiltepe, or chiltepin, is among the most popular types coming from Guatemala. Similar to a Cobanero, it can reach up to 100000 Scoville units, and you can use it as a powder in cooking.

There are several varieties on the market, and, as a common export, you can find them easily in your local store or online. Among the milder varieties, there is the Amarillo Chiltepin, which is yellow and less spicy than its red counterpart. Alternatively, you can recognize the Guatemalan Chiltape by bigger pods, a higher number of seeds available, and enhanced spiciness.

guatemala peppers, small hot peppers

Guatemalan Hot Sauce

With the variety of chili peppers available, Guatemala has been able to create some of the tastier and spicier sauces. While some are milder and able to be appreciated by a wider audience, the Guatemalan Hot Sauce is only for the bravest of eaters!

Similar to other Hispanic countries, many dishes in Guatemala will not be too appetizing without a degree of spiciness. This hot sauce will certainly bring out the unique flavour of the Chiltepe peppers while moderating its incredible heat. Also, you can add it to casual dining dishes easily.

It is perfect for bringing extra taste to sandwiches, soups, or salads. You can also use it to create spicy meat dishes for the whole family. For this sauce you will only need ⅓ cup chiltepe chilies, one onion, fresh cilantro, tomatoes, and salt and lime to season. After boiling the chilies for about three minutes, chop the vegetables and the cilantro.

hot pepper sauce recipes, hot pepper saucePress down the chilies with a fork or a grinder and mix them with the chopped vegetables. Add the salt and lime and the extra seasoning you prefer. Lastly, add some of the water you used to boil the chilies, mix everything, and refrigerate it. The homemade Guatemalan hot sauce is now ready to use anytime you need it!

Even if you are not into cooking, you can easily find different varieties of Guatemalan hot sauces on the market. If you are too lazy to go shopping for this hot sauce, you can order it online easily.

Conclusion

Chiltepe is one of the spiciest and most tasty varieties of chili peppers on the market. They are incredibly versatile and perfect for any recipe. They are easy to grow, use, and prepare, and are Guatemalan favorites. This homemade hot sauce will be your absolute favorite without a doubt.

Have you found this article helpful?  Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Luisa Davis

Luisa Davis

Luisa Davis is a frelance writer and foodie based in Portland, California. Though raised on her mother's homestyle Italian cooking, she has spent most of the last five years traveling and immersing herself in other countries' cuisines. Her work have been published in various publications, both online and offline.

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