Shades of Red: 7 Types of Indian Chillies

Shades of Red: 7 Types of Indian Chillies

A must in every Indian curry, chilli is famous for its pungency and is the most common spice cultivated in India. Despite of the consequences, chilli is one ingredient the world craves for to kick its taste buds. All Indians must be proud that our country is the only source for hot chillies with wide variants. Extensively used as spice in curried dishes,they are main ingredient in curry powder and in seasoning. Read on below more about different types of Indian chillies.

1. Bhoot Jolokia/ Ghost Pepper/ Naga Jolokia

Source- bonnieplants.com
Origin Assam
Scoville Rating 80,000-1041427 SHU
Heat Level

Proclaimed to be the hottest chilli on the planet, Bhoot Jolokia has its origin in Assam.  A little amount of formidable hot Jolokia is enough to bring up the heat. If you are a true lover of hot and spicy food, then you must attempt tasting the Bhoot Jolokia at least once in a lifetime. Referred to as ‘Ghost Pepper’, they have a very interesting story behind. As per the locals of Assam, these chillies used to grow in jungles long back. Elephants crossing that part of jungle, where the Bhoot Jolokia was densely packed, would suddenly run scattered as if they have seen a ghost. The intense smell of chillies affected them, leading to those chillies being associated with ghosts and hence the name ‘Ghost Pepper.’ The heat of Bhoot Jolokia will kick in only after 50 seconds resulting watery eyes, hiccups and shortness of breath.

2. Kashmiri Chilli

Source- Freepik
Origin Kashmir
Scoville Rating 2000 SHU
Heat Level

Kashmiri Chillies are famous for its rich wine red colour. It gives flavour to curries and is not so spicy. Apart from colour,it has a high content of Vitamin A and C which boost immunity. A staple chilli for Indian cooking, they are loved for red hue and eatable mild heat. The roasted Kashmiri chilli spreads an exotic aroma. They can be used as a colour addictive as well as flavour enhancer. Grown in temperate regions, now they are not exclusive to Kashmir, are also grown in Himalayas and Telangana. With a lovely fruity undertone, Kashmiri chilli is the most exported chilli from India.

3. Guntur Chilli/Sannam Chilli 

Source- Freepik
Origin Andhra Pradesh
Scoville Rating 30,000 – 350,000 SHU
Heat Level

Guntur Chilli is hot to handle with high pungency. Famed for its colour and flavour, they originate from Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh. Rich in capsaicin, Guntur chillies are dark red in colour. Guntur Chillies are exported to all over the world due to its health value.  It can help boost energy production and increase antioxidant defense. Almost every popular dish in Andhra Cuisine contains a hand full of Guntur Chillies making it hard to resist tasting.

4. Bird’s eye chilli/Peri PeriChilli/Thai Chilli/Dhani Chilli

Source- Thechillifactory
Origin North East
Scovile Rating 100,000-225,000 SHU
Heat Level

Bird’seye chilli is one among the 10 hottest chilli peppers in the world. Very small in size, they make you extremely alert. They have a key role in nutrition and health as well. Bird’s eye chilli helps in reducing cholesterol, blood pressure and sugar level. The ripened chillies appears to look like the eye of a bird and hence the name Bird’s eye chilli. They are 20 times hotter than Jalapeno chillies.

5. Byadagi Chilli 

Source- Freepik
Origin Karnataka
Scoville Rating 9,000-15,000 SHU
Heat Level

Very dark red in colour, Byadagi Chilli is a famous chilli from Karnataka. Widely used in South Indian Cuisine, they give deep red colour with mild spice. The extractable red pigment from the Byadagi Chilli, oleoresin is used in making cosmetic products like nail polish and lipstick. They are used an important ingredient in many spicy food preparation. Depending on the size, shape and seeds, Byadagi Chilli comes in two different types: Dabbi and Kabbi.

6. Kanthari Chilli 

Source- Thehippyseedcompany
Origin Kerala
Scoville Rating 50,000-100,000 SHU
Heat Level

A unique variety of Bird’s eye chilli, Kanthari  Chilli is pungent and hot, which can make our eyes water if eat one.  Mainly grown in Kerala, they have a very distinct smell and impart great flavour to the food. Rich in capsaicin, they help in controlling cholesterol level and burning calories. Raw Kanthari Chillies eaten because of the medicinal value and health benefits. Extensively used spice in curried dishes, they are main ingredient in making hot sauce. The flavour and spice content is high in this small sized chilli.

7. Mundu Chilli/Fat Chilli

Source- amazon
Origin Tamil Nadu
Scoville Rating 20,000 SHU
Heat Level

Found in Tamil Nadu, Mundu Chilli is a red round chilli with moderate pungent. With sharp aroma and strong flavour, they are very popular in South Indian Cuisine. Fat and roundish they are called‘Gundu Muluka” in Tamil meaning Fat Chilli. Dark and thick skinned, they are used for food colouring. They are high in mouth-watering peppery flavour and are exported worldwide.

Chillies add magic to every preparation making it a flavour packed one. Now start making your delicacies spicy and colourful with a handful of Indian Chillies!

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