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How to enjoy Bird’s Eye Chilli in your cooking

How to enjoy Bird’s Eye Chilli in your cooking

You have known some hot chilies but then have you tried out a variety of the Bird’s Eye Chili popular in South India called locally as ‘Kanthari” (Capsicum frutescences). ‘As hot as a Kanthari’ is even a phrase in the local Malayalam language, indicating how hot this diminutive chili really is. It has earned a solid reputation as one of the top ten hottest chilies (chili peppers) in the world.

Kanthari is not an item commonly found on the supermarket shelves though you could get pickles made of it. But you can order fresh from easily and from anywhere around the world. This is a chilli that the Keraleans (people from the South Indian state of Kerala) just love.

A “chammanthi” (lightly crushed chutney) made of Kanthari, shallots and curry leaves. A handful of Kanthari and shallots along with a small bunch of curry leaves is crushed and a bit of fresh coconut oil is poured on it and a bit of salt is sprinkled for taste. This makes a fantastic dip to be had with boiled cassava (tapioca) or can be tried out with anything you like pappadoms or nachos.

The Kanthari is renowned for its exceptional medicinal values. It is known to help reduce blood sugar with regular use with your food. It lowers cholesterol and has beneficial properties against arthritis and rheumatism. The concentration of the content capsaicin in Kanthari acts as a powerful pain-relieving agent. Other properties of Kanthari are in helping prevent blood clots. It is known to have a great effect in relieving the miseries of cold and flu.

The Kanthari can also be crushed with fresh shallots, curry leaves and ginger to be added into light fresh butter milk to make a refreshing drink popular in South India, especially in Kerala, as “Sambaram”. Try it out by ordering your fresh stock of Kanthari from



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