The Santaka Pepper is a hot chili pepper that originates from Japan. It is rather small in size, measuring about two inches in length and up to an inch in width, at maturity. It has a tapered teardrop shape and a vibrant red color. At harvest time, the skin of the fruit is thin and wrinkled. The flavor of the Santaka pepper is one of intense spiciness.
Santaka peppers grow well in containers, making them an excellent choice for those living in apartments or with limited ground space. Beautiful small white flowers adorn the pepper plant just before the fruit begins to grow. The pods grow upright instead of downward. This leaves the peppers in full exposure to the elements. For this reason, the pepper plants need to be placed in an area where afternoon shade is possible. This will prevent scalding from the sun. Santaka peppers will require regular watering with non-chlorinated water. Rain or well water is suggested. Never overwater the plants. The soil should only be moist and not wet. The Santaka plant can produce as many as 150 peppers during a life cycle.
This great addition of the chili pepper family has various uses. Santaka peppers are used fresh around world by many cultures. They are equally enjoyed in salsas and sauces. Some individuals string the peppers and hang them to dry. Dried peppers are often ground into a spice for flavoring various dishes. Asian cuisine uses more of the Santaka pepper than any other.
With a great amount of heat, the Santaka pepper can cause a great deal of discomfort if mishandled during processing, such as cutting or chopping. The hands should be protected by latex gloves. While wearing the gloves, individuals should avoid touch their face or other exposed skin. They should also avoid touching other people or objects. This only transfers the burning sensation. The burning sensation can be washed from the skin using baby shampoo or milk. After eating a Santaka pepper, individuals may experience burning of the mouth, throat, and stomach. Drinking milk will alleviate this discomfort. Ice cream will also bring relief. Products contain a high amount of fat are necessary to bind to the heat causing compound in peppers.
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