5,000 - 23,000 Scovilles. The serrano chili pepper is a smaller version of the jalapeno, similar in color, but smaller, about 1 to 2 inches long, 1/2 inch wide. They generally grow between 1 - 4 inches long and about 1/2 inch wide.
They are meaty peppers and are not the best choice for drying. The serrano pepper originated in the Mexican states of Puebla and Hidalgo. They are commonly red, brown, orange, or yellow.
Serrano peppers are perfect for salsas, sauces, relishes, garnishes, and more. They are usually best when roasted.
History of the Serrano Pepper
The Serrano pepper has a long and dignified history in Mexican cooking. It is one of the most commonly found chilies in this area of the world and is very flavorful, thus many of Mexico's most heralded dishes involve this pepper as a flavoring. Serrano peppers get their name from the fact that the area of Mexico where they are principally from - the Mexican states of Puebla and Hidalgo - are incredibly mountainous. The word "sierra" means mountain in Spanish, so "Serrano" is considered a permutation of this word.
Serrano Chili Peppers
Generally speaking, the plants themselves reach about one to one and a half feet tall, and each plant can produce fifty or more pepper pods. When unripe they are green, but ripe Serrano peppers can be any number of colors, from green to red to brown, orange, or yellow. Most people consider serranos to have a "crisp" flavor, and they are very commonly used in pico de gallo. They are hotter than their more famous cousin, the Jalapeño pepper, but despite this many people enjoy eating serranos raw. They are considered to be one of the more flavorful hot peppers on the market in general, which is part of what makes them so popular.