Chilli can provide your dish with that extra spice element that can lift a dish from good to great. Research shows that the chemical in chilli, capsaicin stimulates your adrenal glands which releases hormones, giving your body an energy burst.
When preparing chillies it’s best to wear gloves. You want to avoid contact with your face when chopping chillies wherever possible. Capsaicin will irritate any skin it comes into contact with and leave it feeling unpleasant. If you love the flavor of chilli but want less heat, we recommend you remove the seeds. The most efficient way to remove the seeds is to halve the chilli lengthways, and scrape out the seeds with the tip of a teaspoon. You can slice or chop the chilli as required.
Chilli can be stored in snap lock bags or air tight containers for up to two weeks in the fridge. For longer storage you can freeze chillies for up to six months.
In Australia there are five main varieties of chillies available, they all have different heat ratings and are better suited to certain types of dishes.
Long Chillies (Red and Green) 4/10*
These are your common no frills chilli that you will often see at Your Local Fruit Shop. They are usually around 10cm in length, with the red chillies slightly sweeter than the green. The heat being produced in these long chillies is suited to salads, stir fries and pasta sauces.
The jalapeno is a medium sized chilli which commonly grow to 8cm in length. Those who know nothing about chillies have heard about the reputation of the thick fleshed jalapeno. Chilli lovers would say the jalapeno has the perfect amount of spice. If you’re not fond of your spicing food we recommend you using it sparingly. This chilli is very popular with Mexican dishes and is a great addition to guacamole to bring the heat.
BirdsEye Chilli (Thai Chilli) 6/10*
Most commonly eaten as red, this smaller sized chilli still packs a punch. Commonly found in Ethiopia and South East Asia, it is very popular in curries, Thai salads, Indonesian dishes and curry pastes. The unripe green birdseye are popular among chefs due to their intense sharper flavour.
Serrano Chilli 8/10*
The serrano is similar in appearance to the birds eye chill but has the rounded ends of a jalapeno, but don’t be fooled, the serrano packs a greater punch than its counterparts. With the sweet crunchiness of a capsicum but the heat exceeding a jalapeno, they are typically eaten raw and are found in abundance in the sierra mountain regions.
The king of the sting, an extremely hot 5cm pocket rocket. The habanero, known by most chilli addicts as one of the hottest chillies in the world, it certainly packs a punch. Available in green before they ripen they can turn into orange, brown, yellow, green or purple. Often sold as a hot sauce, Your Local Fruit Shop would recommend only use a thimble to cover your food.