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Red Serrano Chile Peppers
Inventory, 36 lbs : 0
This item was last sold on : 08/19/20
Red Serrano chile peppers are slender, straight to slightly curved pods, averaging 2 to 10 centimeters in length and 1 to 2 centimeters in diameter, and have a uniform, conical shape that tapers to a rounded point on the non-stem end. The skin is glossy, smooth, and firm, ripening from dark green to red when mature. Underneath the thin skin, the flesh is crisp, thick, pale orange-red, and aqueous, encasing a central cavity filled with membranes and small, round, and flat, cream-colored seeds. Fresh Red Serrano chile peppers have an acidic, earthy, and semi-sweet flavor followed by a sharp, pungent heat.
Red Serrano chile peppers are available year-round with a peak season in the summer through fall.
Red Serrano chile peppers, botanically classified as Capsicum annuum, are mature, slender pods that belong to the Solanaceae or nightshade family. The dark red peppers are the mature version of the green serrano chile pepper, left on the plant to fully develop, and average 10,000-25,000 SHU on the Scoville scale. Red Serrano chile peppers are distinguished from green serrano peppers as they typically contain higher contents of capsaicin, which is the chemical compound that triggers the brain to feel the sensation of heat or spice, and the red peppers also develop a slightly sweeter flavor. The name Serrano is a derivation of the word sierra meaning “from the mountains” in Spanish and refers to the mountainous region where the pepper was first cultivated in the Mexican states of Puebla and Hidalgo. Serrano chile peppers are one of the most utilized varieties in Mexican cuisine, but the mature red pods are more difficult to find in local markets in comparison to the green pods. The red peppers are praised for their earthy, semi-sweet flavor and are primarily utilized in hot sauces.
Red Serrano chile peppers are an excellent source of vitamins A and C, which are antioxidants that can help boost the immune system, repair cell damage, and increase collagen production within the body. The peppers are also a good source of vitamin B6 and contain some copper, fiber, folate, potassium, and manganese.
Red Serrano chile peppers are best suited for both raw and cooked applications such as boiling, baking, roasting, frying, and sautéing and can be used interchangeably in recipes calling for green serrano peppers. When raw, the peppers can be used fresh or roasted in cornbread, tamales, cheese soufflés, and pasta dough. They can also be consumed fresh, out-of-hand as a spicy snack, sliced and tossed into salads, minced into marinades for cooked meats, or chopped and mixed into guacamole, pico de gallo, salsa verde, and chutney. In addition to fresh applications, the thick flesh of Red Serrano chile peppers makes them ideal for roasting or smoking, a process that will enhance their flavor. Once cooked, the peppers can be blended into spreads and sauces for burgers and sandwiches, infused into oils, tossed into soups, chilis, and stews, or lightly cooked into egg dishes. Red Serrano chile peppers can also be pickled for extended use or used as a substitute for jalapenos in recipes if more spice is desired. Red Serrano chile peppers pair well with grilled meats, shellfish, robust cheeses such as feta and cotija, tomatillos, avocadoes, kale, onions, tomatoes, corn, herbs such as cilantro and oregano, coconut, ginger, tahini, honey, and cream-based sauces. The fresh peppers will keep 1-2 weeks when stored whole and unwashed in a paper or plastic bag in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.
In the United States, Serrano chile peppers did not become a popular variety until the 1980s when chefs began pickling the peppers in vinegar with carrots and onions, a recipe that has been used in Mexico for many generations. The red version of the peppers also gained notoriety with the introduction of sriracha hot sauce, which is a sauce first created in the city of Sri Racha, Thailand. As the hot sauce increased in popularity across the United States, many chefs began creating homemade versions using Red Serrano and red jalapeno peppers. Sriracha hot sauce is commonly used as an everyday condiment in the United States and is added to French fries, eggs, noodles, soup, rice, burgers, and stir-fries.
Serrano chile peppers are native to the mountainous regions of northern Puebla and Hidalgo, which are states within Mexico, and have been cultivated since ancient times. Today the majority of the Serrano chile pepper production comes from the Mexican states of Sinaloa, Veracruz, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas, and the peppers are highly exported to the United States and into Central and South America. The peppers are also grown on a small scale in the southwestern United States. Red Serrano chile peppers are rarer than their green counterparts and are not commonly found in supermarkets. The mature peppers are sold through farmer’s markets and specialty grocers and are also grown cultivated in home gardens.
Recipes that include Red Serrano Chile Peppers. One is easiest, three is harder.
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