Curly red chili is one of the most popular types of chili pepper used in Indonesian cooking. It is easily recognizable with its red color and long, slender, and curly shape.
- Capsicum annuum L. (scientific name)
- Cabe keriting (Indonesian)
What is Curly Red Chili?
Curly red chili is a type of Capsicum annuum. It is generally skinny, slender, about 10 to 25 cm long, often with a curly shape. Curly red chili tastes spicy and contains very small but very tough grains inside. The seeds of this chili produce a spicy taste when eaten.
The curly red chili can also be harvested when still under-ripe and green. The green one is called curly green chili. When it ripens, it turns red as it loses all the water content and becomes more pungent. That is why curly green chili is less spicy than curly red chili.
How Spicy Is Curly Red Chili?
Curly Red Chili is a moderately hot chili pepper used to flavor dishes. It is considered a medium spicy level in Indonesian cooking.
How to Choose
If you notice any signs of rotting, including soft or dark spots, you should throw them out. Fresh chili peppers should be shiny and firm to the touch. There should be no wrinkles or discolorations before storing.
How to Store
If you plan to use them soon, you can keep fresh chili peppers at room temperature for a few days. Place them into paper bags and keep them in a cool dark place, such as your pantry.
You can also store them in the refrigerator for up to 2 to 3 weeks. Do not wash the peppers before storing them. It is best to keep them dry because moisture can speed up the rotting process.
If you plan to freeze them, wash them and you can store them whole or cut. They will last for up to 6 months in the freezer. Place them in an airtight freezer container or ziplock bag. Fill the containers as full as possible or remove as much air as possible to retain their freshness longer.
Chili peppers are also great to dry. You can exactly use dried chilies exactly the same in recipes as you would do fresh ones. Place on a plate or a wire rack in a dry, well-ventilated room. You can also string the chilies up on string or thread and hang them to dry. Within several weeks, you will have dried chili peppers.