Please Help Me Identify This Chili Variety!

A chili shrub. Growing peacefully on side of abandoned and wrecked building. Perhaps the seed was there and grew there by accident, carried by animals or human. It would have come in group otherwise. I picked a rare ripe and gave it to my friend. I picked two greens and kept them for myself.

I am sure it is a chili pepper. The leaves look alike and the fruits look alike. The fruits are way bigger than siling labuyo but way smaller than bell pepper. Stouter and half as long as siling panigang.

The next image shows the approximate size.

two green chili on side of stainless steel rulerLooks like a green fake chili. Someone might have mistaken it for… I did investigation. Some said it was large chili with an extremely hot flavor. While other were saying it was just any ordinary siling panigang. A mild tasting variety.

A growing habit observation. Hot chili are pointing upward (siling labuyo) while the panigang and bell pepper varieties are drooping / pointing downward. These fruits are pointing downward at 45 degrees angle. What people around said were confusing and the growing habit further added to puzzle.

green short chiliHas a strong chili aroma. The two green fruits in my open cabinet were making me  cough. However, the taste was telling the otherwise.

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

The Making of Red Chili Powder

They did the effort of patiently drying these group of hot chili peppers but never wanted to do the last two hard parts, the roasting and grinding. They were thinking, roasting will cause emission of flavors which are very irritating to nose and eyes.

chili pepper in cellophanechilli pepper on bilaoThe chilis. I first thought they were siling panigang but they were not.  These chili are way bigger than regular siling labuyo but two times smaller than siling panigang. The grower explained further, fruit of hot chili grow upward while the panigang group and the likes of chili pepper grow downward. These grow upward just like miniature labuyo and are about as hot.

The drying. By batches, chilis were scattered on bilao.  Placed under the direct heat of sun continually for several weeks. It was a rain and shine situation so the drying took the long several weeks.

The roasting. It is common to us to roast or toast herb and spices. I tried to find out the reason for this but mr web never showed no appropriate answer.

chili pepper before roastingBased purely on my intuition, roasting  is needed to drive the residual moisture out, making it crisp enough for easy grinding. The extended shelf life brought by sufficient drying is a bonus.

I patiently removed all the dried stalks. Put the red chili in big pan. Set the gas stove flame to very low. Did continious stirring for almost 30 minutes until the dried chili skin began crumbling.

chili pepper removing the stalksWhile roasting, the smell seemed irritating but not as bad as I expected. However, my wife opened the door and a window to fend it off. It seemed she was very irritated.

The grinding. I used the manual steel burr corn mill for reducing its particle size. I adjusted the setting just enough to pulverize the skin and some seeds. Leaving whole seeds seem to give it a more natural look.

chili powder in stainless steelGrinding was the hardest. The odor was very irritating. I had a runny nose and intermittent coughing.

chili pepper in bottle

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

What To Do With Leftover Tacos?

She made her own tacos once (using the commercially available taco shells) but never repeated it ever again. The mix she made was awesome but there was a problem with the taco shells. The shells are crispy. It crumbles upon bite and the fillings start falling down to a mess. The best way of eating is placing it on plate and using spoon and fork. So the taco shells are of no use. Just a crispy decoration.

So these few pieces of taco shells has been staying near the vegetable bin for quite a while. Throwing it away is an option but it would put some hard earned money to waste.

The taco shells are still crunchy. The cold storage condition has maintained its crispiness. It could be eaten as is. However, it is plain and has a strong taste of raw flour. I tried dipping it in mayonnaise and soaking a bit in chili hot vinegar.

mayonnaise and taco shellschili hot vinegarI barely managed consuming all tacos. Both dips never worked well.

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

The Half-Eaten Chili Peppers

As the name of siling labuyo suggest. Labuyo means wild, no owner, it is growing on its own thru natural reproduction method. So I am thinking every siling labuyo I see is really wild and I can freely get its red ripe fruits, unless it is aligned with others of the same kind.

So I found one again and my normal routine started. I came and picked the red chillis one by one. The land owner sure own this but I getting scolded by him is less likely. He didn’t plant it for sure. It was near the cliff and too far away from residential area. I continued until I got them all. I was going to put it in vinegar bottle.

While picking, I noticed these few half-eaten fruits. I was wondering what insects on earth can resist such hot skin burning sensation. Chilli is a natural insect fighter. That specific insect sure rendered it useless.

half-eaten chilli peppers

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

The Fresh Ginger Sauce Cup

Do you have any project idea? You think its good but too afraid to put it to reality. Afraid of what people might say? Too afraid of rejections and criticisms? Well, how would you know if its good or not if not put into actions? Take it from me. Try it as long as it is not dangerous and won’t do any harm!

This is a mother ginger. I think a fresh ginger sauce cup would be nice. Just put vinegar and chili on it and the sauce is ready to serve. Through osmosis, the ginger flavor will mix with vinegar. It could be a nice table attraction too.

mother ginger

Notice that the ginger is stable at this position.The two leg-like structures serve as support. I drew a circle on top. Then I curved it carefully using scalpel blade.

It looks like a cup now.

ginger cup

Lastly, I pour vinegar with chili.

ginger cup with chili and vinegar

I cannot decide if its good or not. Brother and my wife said it sucks! They are so cruel on me!

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.