Cascabel Chile (pronounced “kas-ka-bel”), Capsicum annuum, are also called cascabel pepper, cascabel chili, or chile cascabel.
There are approximately 10 chiles per ounce.
What are Cascabel Chiles
Like many Mexican chiles these are known by a different name in their fresh state – bola, bolita, or boludo. The Cascabel is a plump, round, smooth and small chile that resembles the Cherry chile pepper. When mature they are about 1-1/2" in diameter. When dried, the color darkens to a deep reddish-brown with an almost transparent but thick skin. This chile pepper is also sometimes referred to as rattle chile on jingle bell chile which refers to both the shape of the chile as well as the sound the seeds make when a dried chile is shaken.
Cascabel chiles is one of the Mirasol cultivars. Mirasol (known in its dried state as the Guajillo Chile) translates to 'looking at the sun' in Spanish, Mirasol refers to the erect nature of the pods while growing on the plant.
History of Cascabel Chiles
The Cascabel chile has a rich, but not well documented, history and while not as popular outside of Mexico as some of the better known Mexican chiles (ie ancho, chipotle, guajillo) it is a popular chile in central Mexican cuisine. Evidence points to the chile being part of the indigenous diet of this region of Mexico as far back as approximately 6,000 years ago and domesticated by 4100 BC, with East and Central Mexico considered by many chile historians to be ground zero for the evolution (through natural selection) and domestication (carefully bred selection) of a wide variety of chile peppers.
Bola Chile Pepper Cultivation
Bola chile plants are grown from seed and reach a height of about 30 inches. They are typically planted in April and the white flowers start blooming in June or July. The chile pepper matures from a green to dark red and are harvested between August and October. Bola chiles are grown commercially in the Mexican states of Coahuila, Durango, and San Luís Potosí.
Where are Our Cascabel Chiles From
What do Cascabel Chiles Taste Like
Acidic, slightly smoky, and woody with tobacco and nutty undertones.
How Hot are Cascabel Peppers
These chiles are considered a mild heat chile and come it at 1,000 to 2,500 SHU (Scoville Heat Units).
How do You Use Cascabel Chiles
In traditional Mexican cuisine chefs and home cooks like to pair the Cascabel chile with other Mexican chiles such as ancho, pasilla, guajillo and de arbol to create complex flavor profiles. We like to roast these chiles on a hot skillet before using and then they can either be ground or rehydrated in warm water so they can then be made into a paste or a sauce.
To rehydrate, rinse these chiles off with warm water and then soak in hot water for 10 minutes. Once rehydrated, dice or puree and add to a recipe. You can also add directly to recipe with enough liquid that will cook at least 10 minutes.
The nutty taste of roasted Cascabel's pairs equally well with tomatoes or tomatillos. We also like to use these in casseroles, enchiladas, fajitas, salsas, sauces, soups, stews, tamales and tacos. One of our favorite recipes using Cascabel Chiles is Birria Stew.
Guajillo chiles (2,500 – 5,000 SHU) can be used as a substitute for Cascabel chiles (1,000 – 2,500 SHU), while these two chiles do have a similar skin texture their flavor profile is not a great match. Another chile that is a great flavor match is the Ancho chile (4,000 – 9,000 SHU) but that chile also packs more heat.
|Also Called||Cascabel pepper, cascabel chili, or chile cascabel|
|Recommended Uses||Use these in casseroles, enchiladas, fajitas, salsas, sauces, soups, stews, tamales and tacos|
|Flavor Profile||Acidic and slightly smoky with tobacco and nutty undertones|
|Scoville Heat Units||1,000 – 2,500 SHU|
|Botanical Name||Capsicum annuum|
|How To Store||Airtight container in a cool, dark place|
|Shelf Life||1-2 Years|
|Country of Origin||Mexico|
|Dietary Preferences||Gluten Free, Kosher, Non-GMO|
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Serving Size1 chile, 3g
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*