Chile Facts & Information
CHILE PURCHASE TIMELINE
FRESH GREEN CHILE – Can be purchased beginning in August, the very best mature chile can be purchased any time from mid-August to late-September during a normal season. You will be able to make a Green Chile purchase in early-August, but keep in mind that the early chile may still be tender and not completely mature. Of course you should still be able to purchase Green Chile into October so long as weather conditions permit; the later in the harvest season it gets you run the risk of an early frost beating you to your purchase.
FRESH RED CHILE – Can be purchased beginning in mid-September and continuing until late-October, or frost.
FROZEN GREEN CHILE – We carry frozen green chile throughout the year, for all those unforeseen situations such as visiting relatives, freezer malfunctions, unexpected parties, or you simply ran out because it was SO GOOD!
SUN DRIED RED CHILE – Can be purchased almost year-round, the harvest of new crop Sun Dried Red Chile normally begins in December depending on the moisture received.
CHILE FACTS AND MYTHS
Many people believe that green and red chile peppers grow on different plants. This is false, chile peppers are a fruit and as such ripen, therefore you have green chile which is “green” and what can be considered not ripe, and red chile which is considered to be ripe. This is why the green chile is ready for harvest starting in August but the fresh red chile is not ready until mid-September, furthermore the sun dried red chile pods are harvested when dry starting in mid-December.
Another myth is that the “second pick” green chile is better. Admittedly that may be true at some markets, it is not at all the case at Snake Ranch Farm Stores™. On our farm (Snake Ranch, LLC) Chris insists that the pickers pick only firm, mature chile. The chile plants produce chile peppers continually throughout the growing season, and therefore do have to be picked more than once, as all fruits are not mature and ready for picking at the same time. The way we harvest our green chile make our “second pick” a less desirable quality, in that the pods are usually much smaller.
Chile is an excellent source of beta carotene and vitamin C. ~ May help relive nasal congestion. ~ May prevent blood clots that can lead to a heart attack or stroke.
Chile is a popular ingredient in Southwest cooking, chiles – or hot peppers – add spice and interest to just about any meal; some of the milder varieties are consumed as low calorie snacks.
Chile peppers are more nutritious than sweet peppers, and the green varieties generally have a higher nutritional content than the red ones. They are very good sources of antioxidants, especially beta carotene and vitamin C. Just one raw red chile pepper (1-1/2 oz, 45g) contains about 65 mg of vitamin C, nearly 100 percent of the Recommended Daily Allowance. chiles also contain bioflavonoid, plant pigments that scientists believe help prevent cancer. In addition, research indicates that capsaicin – the ingredient that makes chile hot – may act as an anticoagulant, perhaps helping to prevent blood clots that can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Incorporated into topical creams capsaicinoids alleviate the pain of arthritis and shingles. They may also reduce the mouth pain associated with chemotherapy.
But… Best of all, they taste good!
Contrary to popular belief, there is no evidence that chile peppers cause ulcers or digestive problems, but do handle them with care. Wear thin gloves and wash all utensils with soap and water after use. Even a tiny amount of capsaicinoids can cause severe irritation if transferred to the eyes. Be sure to avoid handling contact lenses after chopping chiles.
~source~ FOODS THAT HARM, FOODS THAT HEAL, a Reader’s Digest book