Historia del Habanero
El chile habanero es uno de los cultivares con mayor intensidad de sabor picante del género Capsicum. Los habaneros inmaduros son verdes, pero su color varía en la madurez. Los colores más comunes son anaranjados (semimaduros) y rojos (maduros), pero también existen en colores blanco, marrón, amarillo y rosados. Un habanero maduro es típicamente de 2-6 cm (1-2½ pulgadas) de largo.
La mayoría de habaneros se clasifican entre 100.000–300.000 unidades de Scoville de picor (SHU).
Origin and current use
The exact origins of the pepper are unknown, but some speculate that it originated in South America and migrated north to the Mexico and the Caribbean via Colombia; an intact fruit of a small domesticated Habanero was found in Pre-ceramic levels in Guitarrero Cave in the Peruvian highlands and was dated to 6500 B.C.
Today, the the largest producer is Mexico’s. Other modern producers include Belize, Panama (locally named “ají chombo”), Costa Rica, Colombia and parts of the United States including Texas, Idaho, and California. While Mexico is the largest consumer of this spicy ingredient, its flavor and aroma have become increasingly popular all over the world.
Habaneros are an integral part of Yucatecan food. Habanero chilies accompany most dishes in Yucatán, either in solid or purée/salsa form.
The Scotch bonnet is often compared to the habanero since they are two varieties of the same species but have different pod types. Both the Scotch bonnet and the habanero have the characteristic thin, waxy flesh. They have a similar heat level and flavor. Although both varieties average around the same level of heat, the actual degree of “heat” varies greatly with genetics, growing methods, climate, and plant stress.
The habanero’s heat, its fruity, citrus-like flavor, and its floral aroma have made it a popular ingredient in hot sauces and spicy foods. In some cases, particularly in Mexico, habaneros are placed in tequila or mezcal bottles for a period ranging from several days, to several weeks, to make a spiced version of the drink.
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