What is banana pepper? This is not just a pickled chili pepper. Here is more about the best recipes to make, best storing options, the fun facts, and it's heat units.
It's termed as banana pepper for its resemblance towards banana’s shape and its bright color. Apart from that both of these are not associated with any of its individual's characters such as flavor, texture, or the taste.
Banana peppers are renowned for its pickles. Furthermore, a popular topping for the pizza or the burger throughout the world.
What is banana pepper?
Banana peppers are named for their banana’s look alike shape, classified as mild pepper. Other side of the globe calls them banana chilies or yellow wax pepper as well.
A popular ingredient to toss them in a salad, as a top layer in the burger or sandwich, an excellent topping for pizza. It’s also tastes delicious when consumed as raw or as pickled.
An intro to banana pepper
The matured banana peppers are conical shaped with a pointed tip. And measures about 4-5 inches long and 1 inch wide that thins down at the end.
It has firm, glossy skin and bright in color. It also holds clusters of seeds in the white membrane in the center and hollow at the end.
These do taste like a complex combination of tangy, mildly sweet, and with mild heat. It matures as a bright greenish yellow color and turns to orange and red as it ripens. The sweetness develops and gets intensified when ripen.
The different types of banana peppers
There are two types of banana peppers available in the market nowadays. Hot banana pepper and sweet banana pepper. The hot version is referred to as Hungarian wax pepper.
Apart from its heat, these are also classified according to their color. Generally, the grocery stores in the United States carry the perfect matured pepper, in bright greenish yellow color.
Rarely you may find them in orange color and red color as well. Usually, the ripe red colored banana peppers are sweet and with no heat. Rarely you may find some hot surprises as well.
Are banana peppers hot?
As we have discussed already, banana peppers are classified as mild peppers. When compared with the bell peppers, these are slightly hot.
The heat will not hurt the palate, instead leaves out a tingling feel. The heat of the pepper depend on the environment, the weather, and the soil. So, the heat may vary slightly from each other.
Banana peppers Scoville scale
The heat ranges from 0-500 SHU in the Scoville scale.
Some of the banana peppers have no trace of heat same as bell peppers, making it an absolute delight for everyone. And some have recorded upto 500 SHU, meaning it is mildly hot.
Banana pepper vs pepperoncini pepper
These banana peppers are often confused with their look-alike partner, pepperoncini. Though they look similar with similar heat properties, they vary in different other aspects.
The banana peppers skin is firm and smooth. But pepperoncini skin is slightly wrinkled like hot chili pepper. Banana peppers are pointed at the end, but pepperoncini have a rounded tip.
The least amount of heat generated by banana pepper is zero, whereas pepperoncini starts at 100 SHU. Banana peppers originated in Northern America, while pepperoncini are native to Italy.
Both does tastes similar. Hence, pepperoncini can be used as substitutes for banana peppers and vice versa.
The common uses
Fresh peppers. Commonly used in salsa for its sweet and tanginess. It enhances the taste of salsa or salad with its rich peppery flavors.
Pickled. Pickled banana peppers are marketed around the world. And are highly popular as a topping for pizza. Besides, it’s used to enhance the flavor in burgers, sandwiches, and hotdogs.
Stuffed. Another banana pepper recipe that is worth your time, is stuffing this pepper. Same like stuffed jalapeno, the choice of delicious filling are multiples like, cream cheese, ground chicken, beef.