Chile Peppers Recipes
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Scotch Bonnet Chile Pepper

Scotch Bonnet Chile Pepper Stats

Name: Scotch Bonnet
Pronunciation: skoch-BON-net
Length: 1 ½"
Width: 1 - 1 ½"
Scientific Name: Capsicum chinense
Other Names: boabs bonnet, scotty bons, jamaican pepper, martinique pepper
Scoville Range: 100,000 - 350,000

Scotch Bonnet Chile Pepper Origin and History

Scotch bonnet peppers are mainly found in Caribbean and Maldives Islands. The pepper is popular in Jamaican, Grenadian, Haitian and Trinidadian cuisine. The name scotch bonnet refers to its shape which resembles a Scottish men's bonnet, later adopted by women, known as a "tam." The pepper originates from the same species as the habanero pepper. It is sometimes labeled "hot pepper" or "big pepper" in markets.

The scotch bonnet is easy to grow and requires little attention. The peppers thrive in a long, hot growing season like tomatoes. They are grown in greenhouses in areas with inconsistent heat and sun. If the plant is kept warm, watered and fed once a week it should produce an abundance of peppers.

Scotch Bonnet Chile Pepper Description

Scotch bonnets are small peppers that are irregular in shape. Ripe peppers change colors from green through various shades of orange and red. They are known as one of the hottest peppers in the world. Beyond the intense heat, the flavor of the pepper is earthy and slightly sweet. The fruity taste has been described as being close to the flavor of apricots.

Scotch Bonnet Chile Pepper How to Serve or Use

This very hot pepper can be purchased from markets and specialty stores. It is available fresh and in dried form. For cooks who are brave enough to cook with the pepper, the seeds must be removed before it is added to the dish. The seeds can be reserved for planting. In some recipes the pepper is chopped or diced and added to the dish when it first begins cooking. Other cooks use the pepper whole to add heat to the dish and remove it when the dish is finished cooking.

The most well-known use of scotch bonnet peppers is in traditional Jamaican jerk seasoning. It is combined with allspice and several other spices to create the distinct jerk spice mix.

Another common use for scotch bonnet peppers is a West Indian pepper sauce. This condiment is used to spice up poultry, fish and meat. Scotch bonnet can be a seasoning for soups and stews. They are also used to make marinades and barbeque sauces, where they provide a flavorful balance to fruits such as mango.

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