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I need help identifying a red pepper!

j
jedesp Nov 13, 2013 10:05 AM

So I am trying to make this roasted pepper spread, called Ajvar (from the Balkans) and it's made by roasting the peppers then removing the skin and seeds and stuff, blending it up, and then cooking some more on the stove with olive oil and optional garlic. It tastes amaziiiinggg! So, I bought some red peppers for it a few days ago and tried to make a small batch to test it out, but it turned out SUPER duper spicy. Just like straigh up chilly taste. Ajvar is either not spicy at all or it can be different amounts of spiciness but definitelly not like this was. not to mention that I learned a valuable lesson to never try to remove skin and seeds without gloves!!!!!!!!! after that small batch I made, my hands were on FIRE for like 8 hours! nothing would provide relief, it was the worst 8 hours ever! I tried like 20+ rememdies to no avail. so today I went and bought some new peppers. I tasted one when it was fresh, not spicy at all!!! kind of sweetish, with the ever so slightly far in the distance spiciness. so I figured these are the right kind for sure. they look like all the peppers in photos of Ajvar making recipes (e.g. http://www.mymacedoniankitchen.com/?p...) and they were not even spicy when fresh. but THEN I roasted them in the oven, cooled down and proceeded to peel the skin and remove seeds (with gloves, just in case). But then I decided to have a taste just to make sure and they were MEGA spicy again!!!!!!!!! I do not get it!!!!!!!!! they were not spicy at all when fresh, but turned super spicy after roasting. is this normal? I am attaching a photo of the peppers I bought. To me they look the same as the ones in recipe link. I guess if all else fails I will just get regular round red bell peppers. but I am curious if any of you can identify this pepper that I bought???
Thanks!!!

 
  1. b
    brucesw Nov 13, 2013 11:08 PM

    The principle pepper in ajvar is red BELL pepper, not red chile pepper. The original concoction was sweet; piquant versions evolved later. You start with the bell pepper and eggplant and add hot peppers, garlic, etc., to taste, hence ajvar can vary from sweet to very hot.

    Note this quote extracted from the link you provided (right underneath the picture of the pile of roasted peppers):

    "Mince the peppers and eggplants (and chillies) with a meat grinder" - Just before that picture she talks about adding chile pepper for heat but I don't think otherwise it's made clear enough that two kinds of peppers are being used.

    Google for recipes; there are lots of them on the web. You can use what ever red chile pepper is convenient to where you live for heat.

    The product I have in the fridge now, which is one of the spiciest and best I've had, is from Croatia. The list of ingredients, in order, is paprika, eggplant, vinegar, vegetable oil, tomato concentrate, salt, hot peppers, sugar, spices.

    3 Replies
    1. re: brucesw
      j
      jedesp Nov 13, 2013 11:17 PM

      thanks, yeah I thought this was some sort of a long sweet pepper. but I guess not hehe. my mom lives in Serbia and she said over there they have long bell peppers that are sweet and not spicy that she uses for ajvar. but I guess here they dont have those. gonna stick with regular bell pepper.

      1. re: jedesp
        g
        GH1618 Nov 14, 2013 06:30 AM

        Perhaps put one in with a bunch of sweet peppers.

        1. re: GH1618
          j
          jedesp Nov 14, 2013 06:58 AM

          yeah I made it today again using regular bell peppers and used a couple of those psycho spicy ones to add spice. perfect! :)

    2. tcamp Nov 13, 2013 12:53 PM

      How big are they? I had several types of red chiles this season that looked somewhat similar but sizes varied from about 2-3 inches long to 4-6 inches. Small ones were very hot.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tcamp
        j
        jedesp Nov 13, 2013 09:45 PM

        they are around 4"-5" long

      2. Atomic76 Nov 13, 2013 12:17 PM

        The ones in that recipe picture look like red cubanelle pepers to me. You might have gotten red poblanos, which can be hotter.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Atomic76
          k
          Kelli2006 Nov 13, 2013 09:56 PM

          Poblanos usually have wider shoulders and come to a point on the bottom, so I doubt that they are poblanos.

          They might be a Hungarian hot wax chili.

          http://chilibase.info/Identificeer.aspx

        2. g
          GH1618 Nov 13, 2013 11:58 AM

          Where do get them? Shouldn't the seller know what they are?

          To reduce the heat, you need to cut out the placenta.

          2 Replies
          1. re: GH1618
            j
            jedesp Nov 13, 2013 09:46 PM

            that's the problem. I live in Macau and I got them at the fruit/veggie market where the sellers don't really speak english :/ I should have wrote that in the question.

            1. re: jedesp
              g
              GH1618 Nov 14, 2013 06:28 AM

              That explains it! It's an Asian variety that isn't commonly found in the West, so isn't described in the usual references.

          2. i
            INDIANRIVERFL Nov 13, 2013 11:30 AM

            Take the seeds out before roasting.

            Where they were grown can vary the heat dramatically.

            1. Passadumkeg Nov 13, 2013 11:24 AM

              Mild New Mexican chiles would work.

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