capsicum

What is capsicum, bell pepper? glossary | benefits | uses | recipes | Viewed 188136 times

Other Name
Shimla mirch, Pepper, Bell Peppers

What is capsicum, shimla mirch, bell pepper?


Capsicum should be a uniform, glossy colour, firm. The peppers can be round, long or square. Depending on the variety, it may be mild, sweet, hot or fiery. Capsicums are also called green, red or yellow peppers. The two varieties are sweet pepper or chili pepper.
Sweet peppers are green, orange, red or black capsicums with a mild flavour. Chili peppers are significantly smaller than sweet peppers. They are also green, orange, and red but are extremely hot. Turn every meal into a flavorful, healthy and spicy food adventure with different forms:

Blanched capsicum
Take whole capsicum, slice the top and deseed it. Chop it into the desired form if required or use it as whole. Immerse the capsicum to cook slightly to preserve colour and flavor in boiling water for 20 seconds and then plunge into cold water. Remove and use as per the dish.
Capsicum cubes
For cutting the green capsicum into cubes, first cut the capsicum lengthwise into 4 wedges, remove the stem, ribs and seeds and then with the help of a utility knife, remove any remaining rib. To create squares, slice each of the four sections in half vertically. Cut horizontally across each section to cut big or small cubes of desired size.
Capsicum juliennes
Clean the capsicum. Cut the capsicum into 2 vertical halves and remove and discard the stem, seeds and white pith with help of a sharp knife. Place one half on a chopping board and using a sharp knife, slice one half of the capsicum into approximately 1/8 inch thick slices. Stack the 1/8 inch slices and again, cut lengthwise at approximately 1/8-inch to form the julienne capsicum strips. Repeat the same with another half part. Use as required.
Capsicum rings
Begin by cutting a circle around the stem of the pepper. Carefully pull out the stem and ribs. Remove the remaining ribs by scraping with a spoon. Wash the pepper in cold running water to remove any remaining seeds. Cut it into thin or thick rings with a sharp knife. The pepper rings is a good decorative garnish.
Capsicum strips
Capsicum strips can be easily cut by following a simple method. Cut the capsicum into 2 halves vertically and remove the stem, seeds and the white pith of the capsicum. Make long vertical cuts using a sharp knife and you will get thin or thick strips as per the recipe requirement. These strips are used to garnish salads, dips, soups etc. and also can be added to stir-fries and other such dishes.
Capsicum wedges
Cut the capsicum into half vertically. Remove the stem, seeds and white pith properly. Cut it into wedges, thick or thin as desired. They may be seasoned with salt, pepper and spices prior to frying, to give a crispy 'skin'. Capsicum Potato wedges are popular snack foods typically served with condiments such as sour cream, sweet chilli sauce, brown sauce and tomato sauce.
Chopped and blanched capsicum
To chop the capsicum, place a capsicum on a chopping board. Cut the capsicum into half vertically and remove the stem, white pith and seeds using a sharp knife and discard them. Using a sharp knife chop each halve into more long vertical thin or thick strips as per the recipe requirement. Chop each strip horizontally into small or big pieces as required. Now place the chopped capsicum in sauce pan containing boiling water. Allow to boil for 2 minutes. Once done, remove and transfer the capsicum into a deep pan containing cold water. This will refresh the capsicum and help it maintain its colour and will not get overcooked.
Chopped capsicum
To chop the capsicum, place a capsicum on a chopping board. Cut the capsicum into half and remove the stem, white pith and seeds using a sharp knife and discard them. Using a sharp knife chop each halve into more long vertical thin or thick strips as per the recipe requirement. Chop each strip horizontally into small or big pieces as required.
Diagonally cut capsicum
Clean and place the capsicum on a chopping board. Cut the capsicum into halves vertically and discard the seeds and white part from inside. Place the halves on a chopping board and cut them into thick strips and then start cutting them diagonally using a sharp knife. You can cut the capsicum into small or bigger diagonal pieces, as per the recipe requirement and use accordingly. These diagonally cut capsicum are great to garnish foods and make good toppings as well. Also these are frequently used in Chinese cooking.
Grilled capsicum
The capsicum is cut into wedges and then grilled. The skin of the capsicum has to turn slightly blackish. They can be used in salads.

Sliced and blanched capsicum
Cut the capsicum into 2 halves vertically and remove the stem, seeds and the white pith of the capsicum. Make long vertical cuts using a sharp knife and you will get thin or thick slices as per the recipe requirement. Now place the sliced capsicum in a sauce pan containing boiling water. Allow to boil for 1 minute. Once done, remove and transfer the capsicum into a deep pan containing cold water. This will refresh the capsicum and help it maintain its colour and will not get overcooked.
Sliced capsicum
Cut the capsicum into 2 halves vertically and remove the stem, seeds and the white pith of the capsicum. Make long vertical cuts using a sharp knife and you will get thin or thick slices as per the recipe requirement.

How to select capsicum, shimla mirch, bell pepper


Choose peppers that have deep vivid colors, taut skin, and that are free of soft spots, blemishes and darkened areas. Their stems should be green and fresh looking. Peppers should be heavy for their size and firm enough so that they will gently yield to slight pressure. Avoid those that have signs of decay including injuries to the skin or water-soaked areas.

Culinary Uses of capsicum, shimla mirch, bell pepper in Indian Cooking


" Hot and spicy, cayenne pepper adds zest to flavorful dishes around the world and health to those brave enough to risk its fiery heat
" Capsicum can be used raw in salads, marinated and tossed into pasta, cooked and sieved and transformed into pepper sauce.
" They are frequently used both chopped and raw in salads, or cooked in stir-fries or other mixed dishes. They can be sliced into strips and fried, roasted whole or in pieces, or chopped and incorporated into salsas or other sauces. Strips of pepper can be grilled along with other vegetables such as zucchini, eggplant, onions and tomatoes and served as a vegetable platter.
" They can be sliced into strips and fried, roasted whole or in pieces, or chopped and incorporated into salsas or other sauces.
" Because of the hollow shape, sweet peppers are perfect for stuffing.
" The rich coloring of paprika not only enhances the visual appeal of foods, but it can also be used as a major flavoring.

How to store capsicum, shimla mirch, bell pepper


Fresh peppers are best stored in a refrigerator. They can be wrapped in plastic bag and will stay crisp and firm for a week.

Health benefits of capsicum, shimla mirch, bell pepper

Rich in vitamin Ccapsicum protect and maintain the lining of the heart. Low glycemic index (40) colourful capsicum are immune boosters. Colourful capsicums are not only visually appealing but also good for your eyes too, as they contain antioxidant Lutein, which protects the eye from cataracts and degeneration of the eye. Capsicum is high in Folate or folic acid, which is important for rapid growth and multiplication of red blood cells and white blood cells in the bone marrow. See detailed benefits of capsicum

Glycemic Index of Capsicum, Peppers
Capsicum has a Glycemic Index of 15 which is low. Glycemic Index are for foods you eat, ranks carbohydrate-containing foods by how quickly they digest and raise your blood sugar or glucose levels. Foods rank from 0 to 50 are low GI, 51 to 69 are medium and 70 to 100 are high. Foods that are high in GI are not suitable for weight loss and diabetics. Foods like Capsicum have a low GI and hence don't spike your glucose level as they are absorbed slowly. Great for weight loss and diabetics.