The Senise Chili Pepper, or Peperone di Senise, is an Italian pepper with a horn-like shape, popularly served as an appetizer.
What is the Senise Chili Pepper?
The Senise Chili Pepper, or Peperone di Senise, is also known as Peperone Crusco when dried. It is cultivated from a region between the Agri and Sinni rivers near Senise, Italy. These peppers are a major component in the Basilicata region’s cuisine.
Senise Pepper Appearance
The peppers are horn shaped and typically picked when red. The peppers are thin walled with very little flesh. A popular serving method in the region is to simply fry them whole and serve them with salt, much like the Pimiento de Padron pepper in Spain.
They are also prized for being easy to dry, then served crushed or ground into powder to season a large variety of dishes.
Cooking with Senise Peppers
The fresh peppers are typically incorporated into sauces or preserved in oil, but the more popular use is to dry them in the sun.
These dried peppers, called pepernoi secchi, add a smoky element to dishes and are ground to a powder form known locally as "zafarano", which is crucial to many regional dishes.
Grant Smith says
I have a few versions of this.
Have heard there is a spicy version, but I've only had sweet ones so far
The first version I grew was Jimmy Nardello's version.
Very easy growing, prolific and an incredible taste.
I've also got the version floating around in USA, that arrived from Basilicata 80/90's?
They are a bit taller, but a sweet, mild pepper.
This year I've got some sent directly from Italy, but haven't planted yet.
If you don't like spicy pepper, you'll be right with these.
If you love hot pepper, you'll still really enjoy the taste of these.
I'm not sure how they go frying or as pimento, all of mine were eaten out of the garden or given away and eaten as salad peppers.
These ones are certainly an every year type of pepper.
Lance Baker says
PLEASE tell the scoville units for each variety.
Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness says
I need to make updates to a number of the pepper pages. FYI. I hope to get to it. Most of the pepper pages have reported Scoville Heat Units listed.