CHILLI Rocoto Manzano Red - 7 Seeds
Originally from Central and South America, and more precisely in Chile and Peru. The species name, pubescens, means hairy, which refers to the hairy leaves of this pepper. The hairiness of the leaves, along with the black seeds, distinguish this species from others.
Manzano is a Spanish word used for apple trees
The Rocoto Manzano Orange chilli may resemble capsicum in shape, but underneath the hood, it’s one chilli that’s full of surprises. There’s juiciness and a meatiness to this chilli – more akin to a tomato than a chilli – that’s set ablaze with surprising heat. The Rocoto can top out at Habanero level spiciness, and that often catches eaters by surprise. It’s a unique culinary experience that’s a critical ingredient to both Peruvian and Bolivian cuisines.
They typically look like a small tomato, in hues of red, orange, and yellow. Even when cut open, the rocoto looks quite like a tomato – with thick walls and abundant juiciness. But there’s one notable exception. Rocotos have dark brown to black seeds throughout which is typical of any chilli in Capsicum Pubescens. It’s a unique chili experience, both to see and to eat.
And then there’s the Rocoto plant itself which is stunning in its own right. The plant grows tall – giving the Rocoto another common name, the TREE CHILLI – with beautiful purple flowers and silky hairy leaves. It can easily double as an ornamental chilli plant with its looks, especially for Northern climates since the Rocoto can handle cooler temperatures better than many other chillies.
That juiciness that makes the Rocoto more tomato-like does impact its overall versatility in the kitchen. Rocotos are delicious as a paste, and in salsas, hot sauces, stews, and other dishes where their juiciness is beneficial. But, despite their thick walls, the Rocoto is not a good stuffing pepper, nor is it at all a chilli you should try drying. There’s just too much juiciness here.
Care: Germination temperature is between 20°C and 28°C (germination period: 8-21 days); it is therefore recommended to use a greenhouse and a heating mat. The plants need fresh, well-fertilised, permeable soil, and do not tolerate waterlogging. They should be planted in a sunny, protected place with at least 6 hours of sunlight - preferably more. Put the plants outside approx. 2 to 3 weeks after the last frost.
CHILLI ‘Rocoto Manzano Red’ Scoville heat units (SHU): 50,000 to 250,000
The jalapeno reference point (SHU): 5,000
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