Today’s post on selecting seed is focused on a single plant: Red Peter peppers. Truth be told, the naughtiness in me took over the first time I ordered these, but the flavor, color, and drying quality had me coming back for more. (Wink, wink, nudge, nudge.) As just about every seed source will tell you, red peter peppers have an unusual shape. They look, as one source politely noted, “anatomical.”This picture (with brightly colored radishes too) does not do full justice to the “anatomical” nature of these peppers, nor to to their rich color and flavor.
Red Peter peppers have what I’d call a nice amount of heat. They give you a broad but light burn. Their flavor and odor have hints of flowers and raspberries, like good hot peppers do. What really won me over was that Red Peter peppers dry so well. Red Peters start out a beautiful Christmas red, but unlike cayenne peppers, for which the color dulls over time, Red Peter peppers’ color just get more intensely, deeply red. Like cayennes, Red Peter peppers have thin walls and thus easily dry, even in the humid South without a dehydrator. Given their good drying qualities, they are superb for crushing and adding to recipes all winter long.
I suppose you might end up having to explain the origins of the name to the kids, but other than that, I see these peppers as ideal for a family garden.
A few seed sources (not an endorsement!):
Plant source (again, not an endorsement!):
Photographs from Dave’s Garden: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/showimage/60750/
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