Street vendors, including fruit vendors, are a constant sight on the beaches of the Gulf of Mexico. The fruits they sell are in season, and they look like a rainbow of flavors in the seller’s cart.
Some vendors now use a commercially available chili powder for that purpose, which also contains ascorbic acid, lemon juice, artificial colors, and salt. That was not always the case when homemade chili powder was used. In the molcajete, people mixed ground chili pepper/chiltepin with salt and added it to the fruit with lemon juice.
Although the names vary from region to region, the most common names for this very small chili in Mexico are piquin or chili. The name chili is derived from two Nahuátl words: chili, which means “chile,” and tecpintli, which means “flea.” It’s natural to think that the name refers to its small size, but don’t be fooled; it’s quite spicy. This chili is consumed in three stages: fresh from the plant when it is green, red when it is ripe, and dry when it has changed to a coppery color, and it is used in both raw and cooked stews and sauces.
More than a recipe, this is a method for creating your own dry and spicy chili powder, which can be used in fruits, sauces, and Mexican stews, as well as in your own culinary creations.
- ½ cup of dried piquin chili
- 1 tablespoon of salt
- Seasonal fruit such as: watermelon, pineapple, mango in the summer or orange in the winter.
- Lemon juice to add to the fruit to taste.
- Place the dried chilies in a mortar or mortar and pestle and grind until a fine powder mixture forms. If you don't have a mortar and pestle, a blender or spice grinder will suffice.
- Add Mix in the salt.
- Sprinkle a little of this mixture over your favorite fruit; bathe in lemon juice and enjoy!
- If you can't find piqun chili in your area, you can substitute any other spicy dry chili.
- This mixture can be used as an additional seasoning for roast meat, poultry, or fish.
Amount Per ServingCalories 36Total Fat 1gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 2mgSodium 306mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 1gSugar 5gProtein 1g