Peppers are the quintessential summer vegetable (fruit!). It's time to start your pepper plants and soon transplant them into the garden. With so many types of peppers to choose from though, the process can be more of a task than a fun day in the garden. We're here to help.
If your only exposure to peppers are sweet bells or hot jalapenos, read on to discover our 5 favorite exciting and enticing types of peppers to try out this year!
1. Giallo d'Asti Sweet Bell Pepper
The Giallo d'Asti is a juicy and flavorful yellow bell pepper that is the perfect addition to summer salads, stir fries, stuffed peppers and Sunday afternoon barbecues. The plant produces very large bell peppers, about 6 or 7 inches long and 4 inches wide, so will likely need to be well staked to hold the weight of the fruit. The peppers have very thick walls, yielding a large amount of meat per fruit, and are exceptionally sweet compared to other bell peppers. Plants heirloom seeds or starts so that you can collect the seeds once your fruit matures!
2. Holy Mole Hybrid Pepper
The Holy Moly hybrid is a mildly hot pepper that turn from dark green to a wonderful chocolate color as it matures. This hybrid is a strong plant that produces plenty of peppers in late summer and is terrifically resistant to most pepper ailing diseases. These nutty and tangy peppers are ideal for moles, enchilada sauces and roasted salsas.
3. Hungarian Wax Pepper
Hungarian Wax peppers are known as prolific producers that will provide you with tasty fruits that are medium hot all summer long. They are ideal for fresh salsas, as well as canned ones, and are a tasty addition to chilis, Mexican dishes or added to jars of pickled green beans or carrots. Harvest them yellow for more tender flesh, or red if you want them hotter and plan on roasting or pureeing them.
From the Organic Authority Files
4. Baltimore Fish Pepper
These beautiful, variegated peppers are a staple of Caribbean cuisine, often making their appearance in in fish and shellfish dishes or Creole origin. An heirloom, the pepper dates from the 1870s and has traditionally been cultivated near the area of Baltimore, hence its name. A rather hot pepper, the Baltimore Fish pepper is slightly hotter than a Serrano.
5. Rocoto Red/Yellow Pepper
The Rocoto pepper is a unique and extremely fiery pepper that has been cultivated for more than 5,000 years. Originating from Bolivia and Peru, this pepper appears in either yellow or red on a plant with hairy leaves and blue blossoms. A slightly finicky variety, Rocoto peppers require a long, hot growing season but do best in the shade. Try them in a traditional Andean dish or throw them into a salsa for a fiery kick of flavor.
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Image: Oakley Originals