Numex Easter Chilli

Pretty as a picture

The Numex Easter is an ornamental chilli that was bred by the Chili Pepper Institute at the New Mexico University.  Based at Las Cruces, the Chilli Pepper Institute, New Mexico in the USA, is a research-based non-profit organisation specialising in everything to do with Chilli. It was established to research and educate the world at large about Chillies.

Numex Easter

As part of its quest to develop knowledge about chillies, The Chili Pepper Institute has developed several hybrids with unusual shapes and colours. The Numex Easter, which yields colourful purple, yellow, and orange pods, was produced by selective breeding techniques over many years to result in the beautiful plant that it is today.

It grows from seed to a small dense bush of about six to eight inches tall that produces clusters of about 4 to 6 chillies with colours reminiscent of a selection of Easter eggs. The plant loves the sun, and its pods point upwards in acknowledgement of this trait. Before producing fruit, the plant will produce small white flowers, which will develop into pointed chillies about 2 centimetres in length once pollinated.

The jury is still out on whether ornamental chillies should be eaten.  Some sources state that they can be, but the flavour is not particularly great. With the Numex Easter, expect chillies with a Scoville rating of between 15000 and 30000 SHU. They will add an unusual colour to things like salads and salsas. As a general rule, I would suggest that they are grown for their ornamental qualities instead of any fantastic culinary uses.

Image credit

cultivar413  / CC BY 2.0 / via Flikr