Chili Guide: Twelve Varieties You Should Know

If you like it spicy, you can’t avoid the chili. Whether green, orange or red, as an elegant narrow pod or round fruit, the chili has it all. There are said to be several thousand varieties of chili worldwide, all of which have different tastes. The berries have their homeland – if you really think about it, the chili is a berry – in Latin America. Its name comes from the Nahuatl language of the Aztecs and means something like small, hot peppers.

The chili gets its spiciness from the so-called capsaicin. The more of it there is in the pod, the fierier the enjoyment. You can defuse the chili by removing its insides. There is significantly less of the colorless and tasteless alkoloid in the pulp itself. We measured the spiciness in Scoville units.

Hot, hotter, Bhut Jolokia

While some chilies contain little or no capsaicin, other varieties should only be consumed with caution. Values ​​of more than one million Scoville have already been measured for varieties such as Bhut Jolokia. Things get even more radical with pure capsaicin powder, which contains up to 16 million Scoville. For comparison: Tabasco has a spiciness of around 1600 to 5000 Scoville.

There is always talk of spiciness, but in reality it is pure pain that the body feels when it is fed chili. This is because the capsaicin docks onto the pain receptors, which transmit the pain impulse to the brain. The reaction to this includes, among other things, increased sweat and saliva production, watery eyes and a runny nose.

Even though it sometimes feels like your taste buds are burning while eating it, it actually just feels that way. Nobody has to worry about blisters. Chili tolerance can even be trained. Through regular consumption, the pain receptors are trained so that they do not react so violently in the long term.

Although the chili is considered healthy because fresh pods in particular contain a lot of vitamin C and other ingredients such as beta-carotene, and its active ingredients are also used to relieve pain, it can have the opposite effect. Because not everyone tolerates chili equally well. If you overdo the dosage, you may experience cramps, diarrhea and vomiting. But it doesn’t have to come to that. In the photo series we present twelve varieties with different levels of spiciness.

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