Orange Habanero is among the hottest chilli pepper commonly grown in the world. The fruits are lantern shaped, small and wrinkled and around 3 to 4cm (1 to 1½in) long. They ripen from green to light orange. Closely related to the Scotch Bonnet, they are fiery hot and extremely pungent with an aromatic flavour and a clean but very intense heat. Habanero is cultivar of Capsicum chinense that is regarded as the hottest of the chillies, giving 200,000 to 300,000 Scovilles of heat.
Used in Mexican and Caribbean cuisine, try using them whole so that the flavour infuses dishes such as fish stews, casseroles, sauces and curries. They are also good for making chutneys and chilli sauces. The Habanero when ripe or dried and powdered has a unique apricot scent.
They will grow happily outside over the summer in pots, or planted into the garden, but bring them in before the first frosts to prolong fruiting.
The official heat scale for chillies is known as the Scoville scale, developed by Wilbur Scoville in 1912.To give you an idea of the range of heat in an habanero: a sweet pepper scores 0 on the scale, jalapeño and chipotle chillies score anything between 2,500 to 10,000 and habaneros score 200,000 to 300,000! There are some cultivars bred especially for pain which will got up to 1 million Scoville!
Chili Pepper Habanero has been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit (AGM).
How to grow: