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HISTORY - LA CONSENTIDA

CHILI HISTORY - LA CONSENTIDA

The history of Chili is related to the history of America. The expectations of Columbus and their sponsors saw, to a certain extent, frustrated since the new continent was not rich in spices; if not in vanilla, and the Chili, to which the own Admiral, who went in search of the pepper, baptized with the pepper name. The earth that soon would be called America did not produce those substances that for European had become indispensable.

Chili, unlike other originating eatable plants of America, that took decades in being accepted by the European, knew a fast world-wide diffusion after its arrival to Spain. The American plants of capsicum were known in the Iberian Peninsula after the return of the first trip of Columbus, in 1493.


The new spice was become acclimated quickly and soon the East spread by all Europe and.
One knows that in the middle of century XVI plants of Chili in Italy, Germany and England were cultivated, and that in Moravia there was chilares (Cultivars of Chili) at the end of that century.


The Mediterranean Sea, in its European, African and Asian slopes, was also fertile earth for the growing of Chili. The Greek sailors who soon crossed the Mare Nostrum always made contact with enemy with the new spice, to which they gave the name of pepper or pipeti, relating it to the pepper, and they scattered it towards all the points that touched.


During the following two hundred years the pepper, pipeti, paprika, peperone or piment would deeply revolutionize the gastronomy of the Mediterranean towns. The kitchens of the south of Italy and France, Greece, Yugoslavia, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and other regions have incorporated in a definitive way to many of their culinary preparations the use of Chili, although, fundamentally, in their sweet variant or pimentón.


The American Capsicum transformed the kitchens of China, India and Indonesia. Although specific data of the introduction of Chile in China do not exist until the last century, when it is gotten up definitively to the kitchens of Hunán and Szechuán, it is thought that like other products of the New World, like the corn, the sweet potato and the peanut, Chili arrived at those regions following the route from the Philippines.

It is probable, on the other hand, that the sailors and retailers to the service of the crown of Portugal, introduced Chili in India during his first trip, in 1498. In which one talks about periplo African of Chili, such Portuguese, which they had discovered the Cape of Good Hope in 1486, they took it to Mozambique and Angola, important ports in the route of the commerce of spices, from where one extended, by intermediation mainly of some merchants of Arab slaves, to great regions of the black continent.


Chili occurred so good in these new earth and the taste of its native people was become aclimated so good to the fruit, that soon the American origin of the plant was forgotten to such degree, that in many sites of Africa and India was thought that Chili was grown in those regions


Chile returned to the American continent, of which never it had moved away, in the century XVII, when the first English colonizers arrived at the coasts of the New England with great trunks containing plants and fruits, between which came some chili peppers. With time the travelling spice, dulcified, also adapted to the American territories of the North, and have become part of the culinary culture of some American regions, where chili is called to a preparation generally little hot, like "chili with meat" or the "Cincinatti chili", invented, as Fernando del Paso remembers, by a native Bulgarian refugee of Macedonian.


Nevertheless the hot chili pepper use lasts in the dishes of the Creole kitchen, implanted by the French immigrants in Louisiana, the centuries XVII and XVlll and that continues being very popular, or in some culinary specialties of Texas, California and New Mexico, sites where, in addition, the kitchen of Mexican origin, devotee Chili, knows a fast expansion.


The European kitchens, mainly those of the North, have not finished accepting the presence of the Capsicum between the ingredients of their preference and continue considering it with distrust. But outside them, Chili enriches the kitchens of a very considerable part of the world. In both Américas, North and the South, in the Caribbean, in Asia, in Africa, the different towns and cultures consume different chili pepper species with an assiduity and a taste that nothing they have to envy the Mexicans to him. Through the centuries, the chili peppers have been under a meticulous scrutiny on the part of the botanists, but if their findings were put togehther all and his varied classifications met, the results would be very confused. A consensus does not exist at the moment on the varieties cultivated in Guatemala, except on which they are cultivated commercially, but I thought that most of the Capsicum annuum, with exception of Havanan Chile (chinense or cinense Capsicum - incorrectly, since it probably does not come form China but from South America) and Chili apple tree or perón (Capsicum pubesens, that it is believed was introduced in Mexico of South America at the beginning of century) is original of Mesoamerica.

 

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