I was first introduced to the chile piquín by Roberto, who told me that he likes to grind it up to put in his pozole. While it may look cute because of its size, this pepper really packs some heat. Beware! I really love how it grinds up beautifully in a spice blender to make a fine powder that can be added to any salsa, and I just love the name of this chile. It is so much fun to say: “PEE-KEEN.”
Name: Chile Piquín (also spelled Pequín)
AKA: Chile del Monte, Chile de Chiapas; It appears that this chile has a variety of names, however after doing some research it seems that people often mistake this chile for similar varieties. See below.
Related to: Chiltepín, Tepín (wild cousins) Bird’s Eye Pepper, Amashito, Chilpaya
Fresh Chile Name: This chile is known by the same name both fresh and dried; It is green when fresh and later turns to a bright red color.
Description: The chile piquín is a bright red orange color and is similar in shape to a piece of puffed rice. It is about ½” long and ¼” wide, the size of a large watermelon seed. The name chile piquín comes from a variation of the word chiltekpin which means flea pepper in the Totonac/Tepehua languages.
Flavor and Heat: The chile piquín has a woody, citrus flavor. It is considered a very hot chile ranging from 40,000-58,000 on the Scoville Heat Scale.
Substitutions: Chile de Árbol, Chiltepín,
Other Information: The chile piquín is found in the famous Cholula Brand hot sauce.
Have you ever used the chile piquín? What did you add it to?