FOOD FUN: Enjoya Bell Peppers
With coloring more like a Gala apple than a bell pepper, the Enjoya pepper has a rosy red striping over a canary yellow background.
They are a new bell pepper cultivar. In 2013, Wilfred van den Berg, a Dutch grower, found this beautiful mutant variety pepper on a plant in his greenhouse.
He partnered with a group of other greenhouse growers to develop the strain and produce enough volume of the quality to sell commercially.
Melissa’s, purveyor of the most special produce on earth, has imported these lovelies from The Netherlands.
Enjoya peppers are pleasantly sweet, very crunchy, crisp and a bit juicy.
The variety is denser than other peppers, each one weighing a hefty three-quarters of a pound.
Enjoya bell peppers. Yes, you will enjoya them (photos courtesy Melissas.com).
Buy them as a special gift for a vegetarian or dieter, or as a treat for yourself.
Orden them online from Melissa’s or phone 1.800.588.0151.
Peppers (Capsicum annuum), both sweet and hot, are native to Central and South America.
They are members of the Nightshade family, which also includes eggplant, potatoes and tomatoes—all native to the Americas.
Peppers have been cultivated for more than 9,000 years. The earliest fossils to date are from southwestern Ecuador, dating to about 6,100 years ago (source).
Christopher Columbus found peppers of different varieties growing in the West Indies, where he famously landed in 1492. Seeds were sent back to Spain in 1493, and from there peppers spread to Europe and Asia.
The bell pepper, also known as sweet pepper and in the U.K., capsicum, is the only cultivar in the Capsicum annum genus that has no capsaicin, the heat-causing chemical compound.
Bell peppers are plump and somewhat bell-shaped, with either three or four lobes. Green and purple peppers have a slightly bitter flavor, while the red, orange and yellow varieties are sweeter.
Artisan growers of the fruits* grow even more colors, including brown, lavender and white…and now, with the Enjoya, striped!
Who knows when the next beautiful mutant color may pop up in a greenhouse.
Today, China is the world’s largest bell pepper producer, followed by Mexico, Turkey, Indonesia and the United States (source).
Pepper gets its name from the Greek word for pepper, pipéri. However, that word refers to the black peppercorns from India, Piper nigrum, not the Capsicum annuum chiles of the New World.
The erroneous attribution descends from Christopher Columbus, who, upon first tasting hot chiles, equated them to the spicy black peppercorns he knew.
*Yes, peppers are fruits: Their seeds are carried inside.