The Cubanelle, also known as “Cuban pepper” and “Italian frying pepper”, is a variety of sweet pepper of the species Capsicum annuum.When unripe, it is light yellowish-green in colour, but will turn bright red if allowed to ripen. Compared to bell peppers it has thinner flesh, is longer, and has a slightly more wrinkled appearance. Underneath the surface, the flesh is thick, lightly striated, pale green, and crisp, encasing a central cavity filled with a few round and flat, cream-coloured seeds. Green cubanelle chilli peppers are crunchy with a sweet taste mixed with a very mild heat. Cubanelle peppers generally measure below 100, or “of no significant heat” on the Scoville scale. Most of the cubanelle pepper imports come from the Dominican Republic (where it is called ají cubanela), which is the main exporter of this cultivar.
Usage of Cubanelle Peppers
It is used extensively in the cuisine of Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico and Italy.
Green cubanelle chilli peppers are suited for both raw and cooked applications such as roasting, frying, grilling, baking, and sautéing. When fresh, the peppers can be sliced and layered into sandwiches, chopped and tossed into salads, or sliced into strips and consumed on appetizer plates. Green cubanelle peppers can also be diced and stirred into soups, topped over pizza or pasta, stuffed with meat or cheese, baked into casseroles, or fried in olive oil.
In Cuba, the peppers are popularly used in sofrito, which is a style of cooking that consists of lightly sautéing peppers, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and coriander (cilantro) and is used as the base for many different recipes including soups, stews, rice, and bean dishes. The peppers are also sometimes used in yellow mole sauce. Green cubanelle chilli peppers pair well with meats such as chorizo, turkey, beef, and poultry, onions, garlic, herbs such as basil, coriander (cilantro), and thyme, spices such as cumin and paprika, and cheeses such as pepper jack and manchego.
Storage of Cubanelle Peppers
The peppers will keep up to one week when loosely stored whole and unwashed in a plastic or paper bag in the refrigerator.
Substitutes for the Cubanelle Pepper
The following peppers make for a good substitution for Cubanelle peppers:
- Anaheim Peppers.
- Banana Peppers.
- Capsicum (Bell Pepper).
Green cubanelle chilli peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, which is an antioxidant that can help build collagen in the body and boost the immune system. The peppers also contain some potassium, vitamin A, folate, manganese, and vitamin K. We have been unable to source reliable nutritional data to incorporate in our tables.
Where can you buy Cubanelle peppers?
For Oceania Cuisines
If you have a green thumb, cubanelle seeds can sometimes be found at garden centres and easily found through online seed merchants.
For Cuisines of America
With the increasing popularity of chilli peppers these days, cubanelles are becoming easier and easier to find; many supermarkets carry them, especially if you live in Caribbean or Italian influenced regions.
For Other Cuisines
We recommend you search for the cubanelle pepper using Google.