As is tradition, I picked, de-seeded and ate the first ripe pods of the year. Ripe today were Lemon Drop and Aji Pineapple.
First up was the Lemon Drop. Crunchy, good skin, with a zesty, citrus taste. Less than a second later I got a mild heat. The overall heat lasted only 5 minutes or maybe a bit more, but over a hour later my lips are still tingling.
Next was the Aji Pinapple. Very similar looking pods, so I was expecting more of the same, but this was noticeably more mild in comparison.
An immediate fruity taste, somewhere between citrus and Mango. Much sweeter than the Lemon Drop. I liked the Lemon Drop, but its hands up all round for the Aji Pineapple. A very adaptable kitchen chilli, that would make a great coloured and tasting powder. Pickled would be amazing!
Whilst watering today I was shocked to find this. A fully ripe Aji Lemon Drop. A C. baccatum variety that has a citrus undertone to it.
124 days from being sown and then as a contrast 131 days from being sown. About 1 week left and the seed from those beauties is mine!
Here is a quick update from the almost prepared greenhouse.
I have added insulated aluminium backed bubble wrap to the tops of the pots. It won’t need to be fastened down but maybe just tacked in place after the plant is added.
Why did I do it and not just leave it as it was? I read the following research:-
"Louisiana researcher L. L. Black discovered that aluminum foil mulch produced higher yields of bell peppers than ordinary black plastic. Reflective mulches also drastically reduced aphid infestations in peppers, thus lowering the incidence of aphid-transmitted viruses, such as tobacco etch. Black’s findings showed that plants in plots mulched with aluminum foil yielded 58 percent more than those in black plastic–mulched plots and 85 percent more than unmulched peppers (Black and Rolston 1972)."
Aji Cristal with two early fruits that have started to blush ripe. This was taken a week ago and they are now orange, en route to red. I will be collecting the seeds for next year and sharing.
I was taken by surprise this morning when I watered the plants I found that Monkey Face chilli had produced two pods that had gone completely unnoticed.
First pods of the year. Aji Pineapple. A C. baccatum variety.
The Aji Pineapple is a rare variety that is named after it’s slightly Pineapple taste. Like other Aji’s it is very productive. Peppers ripen from light green to light yellow. They average about 3 inches long and 1/4 inch thick. Great for making a medium sauce or salsa.
A flower from one of the Aji Pineapple Chillies. A beautiful subtle, green and white, C. Baccatum variety.
This will later produce amazing chillies that ripen to yellow and have a hint of fruity Pineapple to the hot taste.
It has a Scoville heat rating of around 10,000-20,000. Reasonable mild!
A beautiful Chocolate Habanero chilli plant.
A unique flavour which is very hot indeed at up to 450,000 Scoville Units. A jalapeño is between 2,000-5,000.