This time of year, a stroll through your local farmer’s market will be overflowing with peppers of every color. At Red Rabbit, we use peppers in one of our most popular made from scratch dishes- our Chicken Cacciatore.
Read on for some more facts about this seasonal and colorful vegetable, including how to pick one that won't burn your mouth!
Are Peppers Good For Me?
The nutritional benefits of peppers are numerous and vary based on what varietal and color of pepper you are eating. Bell peppers are known for their high Vitamin A and C content. In fact, one cup of raw red bell pepper will fulfill the Vitamin A and C recommendation for an entire day! Peppers also have carotenoids and flavanoids, which are chemical compounds that have been proven to help prevent disease, aging, and protect cells from damage.
What Makes Some Peppers So Spicy?
The chemical capsaicin gives hot peppers their heat and is found mostly in the seeds. It's also responsible for the burning sensation you get on your hands when you cook with jalapeno seeds. Ouch. To avoid getting capsaicin on your hands, wear gloves when cooking with spicy peppers, or rub your hands in oil so the seeds slide right off. On the plus side, capsaicin has been shown to help fend off “bad” cholesterol and aid with pain and inflammation. Bring on the heat!
How To Prepare Peppers
Peppers are great because they can be eaten raw and retain most of their nutrients when cooked. Try slicing bell peppers into strips and using them for a quick snack or in place of a cracker with your favorite dip (like our Green Pea & Edamame Dip). You can also trying stuffing them for a low-cost, high impact dinner (Black Bean Stuffed Peppers).
Choosing The Right Pepper
When purchasing peppers, opt for ones with shiny exteriors that are free of bruises and shriveled skin.
For storage, place peppers in a plastic bag before putting them in the refrigerator to optimize their freshness.
Worried you'll mistake a mild red pepper for the burn your mouth hot habanero? Check out this useful infographic for a guide to pepper varieties.
Do you have a good pepper recipe? Share it below in the comments section or post it to ourfacebook page.