In traditional Mexican restaurants there is usually an option for red or green chili sauce and red or green burritos etc. This is because red chili is traditional in Northern Mexico and green chiles are more common in southern Mexican cuisine. Not only were red and green chilies used in different regions, they also taste different. Eddie’s Mexican Restaurant would like to share the major differences between red and green chilies, tell you their story as well as its great health benefits.
Green VS Red Chiles
Some of the best chilies are grown in New Mexico, where much of the different chilies are grown and distributed throughout the United States. New Mexico is most famous for its red and green chiles. When discussing the difference between red and green chili, you might want to know that in the beginning, they were actually the same chili. All chiles started out green and as they ripen they will begin to turn red in color. Essentially, a green chili is unripe which produces less heat and even a sweeter flavor. The red chiles are a fully ripened chili pepper which will tend to be hotter and not as sweet, but full of zesty heat. Both chiles are picked at different times and are prepared in different ways. Both chili peppers are hung to dry, or are roasted, crushed into flakes, or ground into chili power.
Where Did Chili Peppers Originate?
Green and red chiles have an amazing story to tell. The chili pepper originated in Bolivia as a berry and not the spicy peppers we know today. When classifying a chili pepper, it is actually classified as a fruit and not a vegetable, which explains its berry origin. However, chiles greatly changed as they spread throughout South America and into Mexico. Over time, chiles evolved into its own subgroup of plant which is the Capsicum genus food group. Most mammals do not like to eat chiles but were spread by birds. As the original berry adapted to the different climates, so did its taste. In this way the berry became the chili pepper we know today which is why the green chili pepper tends to be slightly sweet and is full of seeds.
Green & Red Chili Health Benefits
Both red and green chili peppers are considered one of the most healthiest foods. Green and red chiles are rich in vitamin A and C. When dried they even contain levels of vitamin A. Fresh chiles are higher in vitamin C. Fresh chiles contain six times more vitamin C than an orange. Along with vitamins A and C, they also contain vitamin B and E, it’s just not as potent. Vitamin B and E is a great source of iron and potassium. Chiles are also high in the antioxidant beta-carotene. Beta-carotene helps the immune system, the eyes and skin, and helps to improve the cardiovascular system. Another health benefit of red and green chiles is their ability to slow down and even prevent the absorption of cholesterol. Chiles as simply a healthy food that most people never eat enough of.
Traditional Mexican Cuisine in Las Vegas, Nevada (Just Minutes from Summerlin, North LV & Henderson, NV)
Eddie’s Mexican Restaurant provides both red and green chili options on many of our appetizers and entrees. Come on down to Eddie’s Mexican Restaurant and try our many traditional Mexican dishes today!