Chilaca Chile Pepper
Chilaca Chile Pepper Stats
Length: 6 - 8"
Width: 1 - 2"
Scientific Name: Capsicum annuum
Other Names: pasilla chile, chile negro
Scoville Range: 1,500 - 2,500
Chilaca Chile Pepper Origin and History
The chilaca pepper is a mild to medium-hot pepper that has a rich and robust flavor. The chilaca is actually a reference to the ripe version of this pepper, when dried it is called a pasilla chile or chile negro. It is commonly grown and eaten in Central Mexico around Guanajuato, Valisco and Zacatecas and in several northwestern regions.
The name of this chili is derived from the Nahuatl acatl language and its rough translation means "gray hair" or "old," which describes its bent and wrinkled appearance.
Chilaca Chile Pepper Description
Chilaca peppers are most commonly twisted or slightly curved and are long and thin. These peppers commonly grow between 6 and 8 inches long and are roughly about 1 inch in diameter.
The chilaca peppers achieve their coloring as they mature when red pigment is produced but the chlorophyll is still retained. When they ripen completely, they appear dark brown, like chocolate, or even black and are known to have a pungent flavor.
Chilaca Chile Pepper How to Serve or Use
The chilaca pepper is often dried, becoming the pasilla, and used in that form. They are commonly put in sauces or they can be ground up into a powder for a seasoning. Pasilla de Oaxaca is a variety of smoked pasilla chile from Oaxaca used in mole negro.
If left fresh the chilaca can be used in salsas, stews, and soups that require some pungency.
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