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Question for Canadian 'Hounds

Do you folks north of the border use the term "bell pepper," or "capsicum?"

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  1. Bell pepper. Because we get so much Britash TV, I'm used to hearing capsicum, but the supermarkets all call them bell peppers.

    16 Replies
    1. re: MrsCris

      But we Brits don't call them capsicums - they're always just "peppers"

      1. re: Harters

        I thought you called them "sweet peppers."

          1. re: Harters

            That's the same for me in Vancouver, Harters, though you will see them listed as bell peppers too. I mostly buy jalapenos (sorry too lazy to find the tilde) but would never call them green peppers :-).

            1. re: grayelf

              Me neither. Jalapenos are jalapenos. Green peppers are green peppers.

        1. re: Harters

          Really? My mistake then. I'm thinking of, for example, Nigella Lawson who seems to call them capsicums.

          1. re: MrsCris

            So I did a quick search as I got curious. It seems that folks in Australia, New Zealand, and India call them capsicums.

            1. re: MrsCris

              I'm surprised that Nigella calls them capsicums. She doesnt seem to on her website - http://www.nigella.com/recipes/view/p...

              1. re: MrsCris

                She might be adapting for foreign audiences. I just bought a copy of a Nigel Slater book in Toronto and was devastated to read an instruction for broiling.

                1. re: gembellina

                  Broiling? BROILING?

                  That's foreign, that is. He'll be writing recipes in pounds and ounces next.

                    1. re: gembellina

                      Damn. The man has sold his soul. Burn him, burn him.

                      1. re: CanadaGirl

                        Broiling is what we call grilling (in the oven, directly under the top heating element). And what Americans call grilling (outside, over flames), we call barbecuing. And what Americans call BBQing, I don't think we really have a separate name for. Maybe hot smoking?

                        1. re: gembellina

                          Interesting. Canadians say broiling as Americans do, but we too call barbecuing what Americans call grilling (for the most part), as you do. We so have BBQ, but it's not very widespread.

              2. Yep, bell pepper. But a lot of people would know what was meant by capsicum, although I've never seen them labelled that way in stores.

                1. It's true - here we do call them bell peppers. But at our house, when we say "peppers" it means poblanos as that are what we buy most often.

                  1. I've heard them termed Sweet red bell peppers here in Vancouver BC Canada..Most people assume if you just say red or green peppers you mean the bell pepper which is the most common in supermarkets. Jalapenos seem to be the next most common, thai bird chillies, habaneros, seranos, Banana peppers, cherry peppers, chipotles, rellenos. heck the list is endless...love them all! I've heard the British use both terms bell pepper and capsicum. As a fan of the Australian Women's weekly cookbooks, I know they used the word capsicum, as well as aubergine for eggplant, courgettes for zucchinis, and kumara for what we call yams which is the more orange and less starchy version of a sweet potato, but our calling them "yams" may not be correct because apparently a yam is a totally different vegetable from Africa...but that's a different discussion... like the difference between a rhutabaga & a turnip. I grew up calling a large yellow "Swede" turnip, or rhutabaga, just a turnip because that's all my Mum grew up with. Years later I was presented with a smaller more rounded white fleshed "English" turnip... oh, but that's another discussion too... I don't care what it's called.... as long as it tastes good!!! :-)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: SusieQ222

                      Me too! I thought the rutabaga was called turnip until I went to buy them.

                    2. Bell pepper or green or red pepper.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Ruthie789

                        OKay. Perhaps a tad too verbose. Apologies. LIke the yellow orange & purple peppers too. The bell ones.

                        1. re: SusieQ222

                          All I know is that I do like them!

                      2. I'm Canadian and have called bell peppers "sweet peppers" or named them by colour. Any other pepper gets a modifier as to type.

                        1. Your post has me thinking, and aside from "Canadian bacon", which we call back bacon or peameal ham, I can't think of anything we call by a different name than Americans.

                          Edit: as soon as I hit post, I remembered we call our milk by different names (homo, 2%, 1%, skim)

                          10 Replies
                          1. re: CanadaGirl

                            Yes, dairy product names between the US and Canada always had me scratching my head. In the US, we have heavy/whipping cream, light cream, or half and half. Canada has coffee cream, cereal cream, blend cream, etc. As an American who spends much time in Canada, I finally learned my milk fat percentages and life is now much easier :)

                            1. re: mels

                              I'm Canadian and have never heard of cereal cream or blend cream. I see heavy/whipping cream, table cream, half and half and light cream. We do not have "fat-free" half and half though (how is that even possible?).

                              And then there's "American cheese" vs our "processed cheese".

                              1. re: Blush

                                Could be regional...these creams are available in the Maritimes.

                                1. re: mels

                                  I am in NS, and have both cereal cream and blend in my grocery stores. Looks like you're onto something with the regional thing :)

                            2. re: CanadaGirl

                              Ice Tea, Sweet Tea are different as well in Canada. And of course if you order a Caesar at a bar - you will get a blank look :p Soda pop - is soda in the US, and pop in Canada. And if you drink too much you will be asking for the washroom - which is a Canadian term - although Americans will likely figure it out as well as know that you are Canadian :o

                              Yes, Bell Peppers are generally called Peppers in Canada though labelled Bell Peppers. I rarely buy them - a little expensive here.... and Thai chilies are everywhere....

                              1. re: cacruden

                                "Soda pop - is soda in the US, and pop in Canada."

                                Not so fast there, buddy! The name that carbonated soft drinks go by in the US is highly, highly regional, and include pop, soda, and coke (as a generic term). There's a map to prove it, county by county: http://www.popvssoda.com/countystats/...

                              2. re: CanadaGirl

                                I tend to hear Americans refer to whole wheat bread as "wheat bread" and white bread as just "bread". This doesn't seem to be a Canadian thing.

                                1. re: topbanana

                                  Doesn't sound familiar. Isn't most bread wheat? :)

                                  1. re: topbanana

                                    In the States, I'm used to (mainly in diners) "wheat" toast, which is that bread that's somewhere in the no-man's-land between white and 100% whole wheat. In Canada, I was given a choice between "white or brown?" toast, which I found much more appropriate and relatable. :)

                                    1. re: Wahooty

                                      Yep, Canadian here, and I grew up with "white or brown bread?"

                                2. Canadian here...

                                  I would call them "green pepper", "yellow pepper" and "red pepper", and would add the term "chili" or "hot" to describe spicy peppers. I'm not sure I've ever used the term bell pepper.

                                  1. Another Canadian here, Toronto to be exact. I've always seen them refer to as red/green/yellow bell peppers.
                                    Colour then type of pepper what I've always seen for most all peppers. Red sheppards pepper, red chili peppers, etc.

                                    1. I've always used/heard them called "color" pepper. So red pepper, green pepper, yellow pepper means a bell pepper of that color.

                                      1. Me think people who use "capsicum" are the same people who use the term "protein" when talking about meat and fish...


                                        On the subject, we've always used "red pepper" (piment rouge) and when talking about "hot" peppers, we go for the generic "hot pepper" or go by variety name (serrano, habeneros, ...)