The Kashmiri chili, originating from the scenic Kashmir region of northern India, is a chili, most often used as a dried chili pepper, revered for its vibrant red color and mild heat levels. With Scoville heat units (SHU) ranging between 1,000 to 2,000, the Kashmiri chili offers a heat level comparable to the poblano pepper, but significantly milder than the spicier jalapeño.
Kashmiri Chili Flavor and Use
This chili is a staple in traditional Indian cuisine and is particularly notable for its deep red hue, which imparts a rich color to dishes without overwhelming them with spiciness. The Kashmiri chili’s unique quality lies in its ability to enhance the flavor and visual appeal of food while maintaining a balance that prevents the dishes from becoming excessively pungent.
In Indian and Kashmiri cooking, Kashmiri chilis are frequently used in a variety of dishes, including curries, stews, and renowned recipes like Rogan Josh or Tandoori Chicken. The chili is celebrated for adding a vibrant color and a strong, distinct flavor that leaves a lasting impression on the palate.
Available in various forms, including whole, powdered, or dried, the Kashmiri chili is an essential ingredient in Indian cooking. Its ability to contribute a dark red color and rich flavor to dishes while keeping the heat level moderate makes it a popular choice among chefs and home cooks alike, allowing them to create visually striking and flavorful meals without excessive spiciness.
Kashmiri seeds are strikingly simple to grow out.
Kashmiri chili plants thrive in warm, sunny climates and require at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily. Good airflow is crucial to prevent diseases, and plants should be spaced about 12 inches apart to ensure adequate growth. Kashmiri seeds are typically planted in seed trays or pots with a seed-starting mix, sown about 1/4 inch deep. For successful germination, maintaining a soil temperature of around 70-80°F (21-27°C) is essential, which can be facilitated by placing the pots on a heat mat or warm surface.
The mature Kashmiri chili plant grows to about 18 to 24 inches in height, with slender, long pods measuring around 5 to 10 centimeters in length. The plant can be grown directly in the ground or in pots, with a recommended minimum pot size of 2 liters, although 5 to 10 liters is ideal for optimal growth.
Here’s a quirky life hack for pepper lovers: the Kashmiri chili, a gift from Bob Kroger of the Cincinnati Chili Club, is a prolific producer of seeds. Bob received these seeds from a friend aiming to boost the availability of sought-after Indian peppers locally. While I encourage embracing the spirit of seed-saving with this easy-to-harvest variety, let’s not forget the charm of variety at OhioPeppers. So go ahead, become a seed-saving guru with the Kashmiri seeds, but when you’re craving something different, you know where to find an array of exotic seeds. After all, I’m not planning to retire anytime soon! 😉🌶️🌱