And this genus does not have the slightest relation to other fairly well-known plants from another family - Pepper. And about black pepper (as well as other species of the Pepper Pepper family), which we use occasionally in the form of powder or “pea” as hot spices, then - not a word!
Plants of the genus Capsicum — shrubs or dwarf shrubs — are cultivated as annuals under conditions of cultivation in temperate countries.
Their leaves are simple, entire, and the flowers are usually solitary, located in the fork of the branches.
Among several species of the genus Capsicum, we are interested in only one species - one-year-old pepperhe Mexican (Capsicum annum L.). It is a perennial cultivated under our conditions (as already mentioned) as an annual plant. On a straight, branched stem, petioled leaves are located - lanceolate or ovate in shape.
The flowers of Mexican pepper are quite beautiful - their white or purple beaters reach a diameter of from one to three centimeters. Fruits, depending on the variety, can be of different colors and shapes.
Homeland plants, as can be seen from the species name, Mexico, and already from here, from America, its culture has spread to other continents.
Chemically, fruits are characterized primarily by the predominance of carbohydrates - among which, of course, sugars are of primary importance. The number of them in the fruits of some varieties ("Bulgarian", for example) can grow up to 8%!
The content of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) Mexican chilli pepper surpasses, perhaps, all other vegetables. In the same "Bulgarian" its content reaches 305-306 mg%.
The sharp taste of some varieties is due to the presence in them of a special compound - capsaicin, which has an exceptional burning sensation! A drop of an aqueous solution containing only 1/2000 mg of this substance (capsaicin) causes a feeling of prolonged severe burning. Burning properties have been used in medicine - emollient ointment is prepared from the fruits of chilli peppers, which is used as an external local irritant for frostbite. In meager doses, similar drugs are used orally as a gastric agent - but not for all diseases. For example, in case of gastric and duodenal ulcers, such “experiments” are absolutely contraindicated!
Bell pepperBeing a single biological species, it is known in many varieties that are combined in two groups - sweet and sharp.
Treat sweet, for example, "Bulgarian", "Crimean white" and others.
The sharp group includes the varieties “Giant”, “Astrakhan”, “Osh Red” ...
Fresh sweet peppers are used to make salads, borscht, various sauces and soups, and also in canned form called stuffed peppers.
The fruits of sharp varieties of annual (Mexican) pepper are used as a spice for seasoning to a variety of dishes, including vegetarian and meat. And the dried ground fruits are the basis for the production of “paprika powder”. Hot pepper, “sweet brother”, is also used in the alcoholic beverage industry.
At the end of the essay - a couple of sweet recipes on the topic of sweet pepper ...
Bulgarian peppers stuffed with ... eggplants
You will need two eggplants and 8−9 sweet peppers, onions (one large onion or two small ones), a slice of white bread and one egg, 1-2 tablespoons of wheat flour, 2-3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, a small amount of milk or water and salt, of course.
Separately, for tomato sauce 4−5 tomatoes, salt and just one teaspoonful of sugar and flour are needed.
How to cook eggplant stuffing? Bake the eggplants. After that, rid them of the peel (peel), rinse and chop. Then add a shredded slice of white bread, soaked in water or milk, pre-fried onions, eggs, flour, salt ... Now all this is good stir.
How to make sauce? Boil tomatoes in a small amount of drinking water, rub through a colander, add sugar and salt (to taste) to tomato juice, cook to the density you need.
Stuffed peppers proper. After washing the peppers, it is necessary to remove the core with the stalk. For 3-4 minutes, the peppers are dipped in salted boiling water, then they should be thrown back in a colander to drain excess water. Filling the peppers with minced meat, they are rolled in flour and fried in butter.
Now the “semi-finished” peppers are placed in a saucepan, poured with tomato sauce and placed in the oven. They should be baked on low or moderate heat.
Sweet pepper (200−250 g), white cabbage (100 g), tomatoes (100 g), fresh or pickled cucumber (100−120 g), cooked rice (80−100 g; cooked in 250 ml of water), ham or lean sausage (100 g), onions (1–2 onions), mayonnaise (or sour milk) and greens (parsley, dill), salt to taste.
Pepper, cut into strips, mix with rice, sliced tomatoes and cucumber, finely chopped cabbage and onions. Salting, decorate with greens, fill with sour milk or mayonnaise.
Enjoy your meal!