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In the market in Niš, Serbia yesterday there were the most beautiful capsicums (bell peppers, red peppers) and chiles on display that I've ever seen.

But also on sale were these "ugly" ones that I first thought were some kind of root vegetable due to their characteristic dull finish. Note also the characteristic "etched" concentric rings going around them:

The chiles in a Serbian market.

My Serbian host has little English and after much effort and phone calls was proud to tell me they are called "hot chille peppers", but hopefully the culinary experts here can find a much more specific name or description.

I don't mind if the only names you can find are in Serbian or some other language, but I am interested to know why they look so different to the shiny chiles and how they are put to use in this part of the world, especially uses which differ to the more familiar looking varieties.

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hippietrail certainly seems to be living up to his/her user name! – Doug Sep 12 '11 at 12:41
Jalapeños, if left to fully ripen on the plant, will develop little white lines on it ... not as dense as that, and they tend to be along the axis of the stem, but they're not the shiny things you get in the supermarkets. I'm not sure if it's an issue with humidity & temperature where they're grown (I'm in a moderate, moist area, while much of our peppers in the U.S. are grown in hotter, dryer places.) – Joe Sep 12 '11 at 14:15
I've spent a lot of time in Mexico, where I learned to love hot food, and saw all kinds of chiles - but never anything like these. I was given the impression that these ones are the really hot ones by local standards. – hippietrail Sep 12 '11 at 20:05
up vote 9 down vote accepted

I've now found them on sale in a posh supermarket in Skopje, Macedonia. This time labelled:

The chiles in a Macedonian supermarket.

потекло скопско

пиперки везени

благи / кг

Which Google Translate massages into:

origin Skopje

peppers embroidered

mild / kg

So an answer is "пиперки везени" or "embroidered peppers", for at least one name used in at least one country. Here is a close-up photo giving a better look at the striations:


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User Martin Tapankov knows these from Bulgaria but does not know of a special name other than "люти чушки" (lyuti chushki), which is the normal name for chili peppers in Bulgaria, not just these ones with striations. – hippietrail Sep 15 '11 at 16:32

The peppers you have on the picture are called Vezena Peppers. I'm in the USA and I am unable to find seeds for these.

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Here's a video called Macedonian Embroidered Peppers - Makedonski Vezeni Piperki It apparently shows that both of the names Vezena and Embroidered are correct. – Jolenealaska Jan 10 '14 at 1:41
@jolenealaska Embroidered is just a literal translation of vezena, so no wonder that they are both considered "correct". Vezena is also the transliteration of везена, which is the word from the accepted answer. – rumtscho Jan 10 '14 at 10:15
@rumtscho I figured that might be the case. – Jolenealaska Jan 10 '14 at 10:49

this is the oldest chili from Serbia (from the year 1300), they are called embroidery chili, they are either very hot or not, when dry, they are chopped and crushed, they are amazing tasting.

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Can you tell us their name in Serbian too? Cyrillic or Latin is fine. – hippietrail Oct 8 '13 at 8:18
1300? Are you sure? Chillies originated in the Americas and by definition would only have reached Europe after 1492 and most likely would have taken longer to make it to the Balkans. – Stefano Oct 8 '13 at 9:00

These are Macedonian fringed chillies (Capsicum annuum longum group 'Macedonian fringed'.)

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(Almost) all of the peppers and chilies in the US are covered w/ a food grade wax. I, for the life of me, couldn't find any pictures of chili peppers without the paraffin. But that's what I think that is. Hot chilis that have not been treated w/ wax.

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I agree; you can even see a few at the bottom left of the photo that look cleaner, and those look like plain ordinary red chilies. – Aaronut Sep 12 '11 at 12:52
No, I have seen this, but never in this amount. This is plant matter, a kind of wood rind-like cells. People I know just don't pay attention to it and use them as any other peppers, depending on hotness and shape. – rumtscho Sep 12 '11 at 13:18
I regularly grow a variety of chilies and peppers. Aside from the occasional white scoring that Joe mentions in another comment, I've never seen anything like this on mine. As an aside, the appearance of un-waxed chillies is almost identical to the waxed ones; maybe a little less shiny. – dmckee Sep 12 '11 at 17:00
I doubt paraffin is used in Serbia especially in local markets. It's a poor country with fantastic produce. Everybody seems to grow their own peppers in their gardens. I was given one freshly picked and it was shiny but my friends didn't grow this kind. Also in the same market were lots of candles made of real beeswax where the same stalls also sold honey. But I'll wait and see what more experts have to say. – hippietrail Sep 12 '11 at 20:07

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