You are currently browsing the monthly archive for March 2012.

There are a hundred reasons why this vegetable needs to be an important part of your diet. Here are few reasons why.

Nutritional Contents of Broccoli

Broccoli, a part of the cabbage family, is a vegetable rich in vitamin C, vitamin K and contains a fair amount of B-complex vitamins. It is also rich in lutein and packs a modest amount of beta-carotene.

In addition to the rich vitamin content, broccoli contains nutrients such as diindolylmethane, small amounts of selenium, glucoraphanin and indole-3-carbinol.

Health Benefits of Broccoli

1. Boosting immunity: Broccoli contains diindolylmethane is an innate immune response system activator possessing anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. This definitely gives credibility to the oft heard ‘kids, finish your veggies’.

2. Cancer prevention: A healthy diet should include broccoli; a regular intake of Broccoli has been shown to prevent prostate cancer. The nutrient diindolylmethane demonstrates anti-cancer activity as does gucoraphanin which is processed into sulforaphane which also exhibits anti-cancer activity.

3. DNA repair: Indole-3-carbinol in broccoli helps in repairing DNA in cells and also helps block the growth of cancer cells.

4. Preventing osteoporosis: Calcium and vitamin K are essential in fighting osteoporosis. While the calcium content of broccoli isn’t equivalent to a glass of milk, it can be beneficial for those who are lactose intolerant.

5. Maintaining blood pressure: Minerals such as calcium, potassium and magnesium present in broccoli help in maintaining normal blood pressure.

6. Healthy Heart: Folic acid, beta-carotene and vitamin C ensure a healthy heart and can help prevent a number of cardiovascular disease.

7. Healthy eyes: Lutein helps in maintaining healthy eyes by reducing the incidence of macular degeneration and cataract development. It also helps improve visual performance and decrease in light sensitivity (glare).

Health benefits of broccoli sprouts: Helps control cholesterol levels, helps reverse diabetes-linked vascular disease and has proven to be one of the most beneficial anti-carcinogenic foods.

Nutrition experts recommend 4-5 servings of vegetables a day at the very least. Broccoli is a very healthy choice. Moreover, it’s quite easy to whip up a simple dish and serves well with meat.

You can find Broccoli seeds at our store, Sweet Corn Organic Nursery.

What is the Scoville rating?

How hot or spicy is a particular chili pepper? Have you ever wanted to know that before you used it in your favorite recipe? Well, there is a means of quantifying the amount of spicy heat of a chili pepper. This scale of measurement is know as the Scoville scale or Scoville rating.

How does it work?

The spicy heat of a chili pepper is a result of the presence of capsaicin. Capsaicin in the chili pepper stimulates nerve endings in the mucous membranes (mouth, nose) which gives us the sensation of spice. In larger concentrations, it can also cause sensation on the skin.

The capsaicin organoleptic test measures the spiciness of the pepper by manually tasting a diluted solution containing extracts of the pepper in question.

Who invented this scale?

Wilbur Scoville, an American chemist, was responsible for the creation of the Scoville scale from his work at Parke-Davis pharmaceutical company on the hotness of various chili peppers. Since its creation in 1912, the Scoville scale is still a popular means of measuring hotness.

Why is there a large range on the scale for various chili peppers?

Like any other plant, chili peppers plants are affected by variation in soil, climate (temperature, humidity, rainfall etC)and seed-lineage. Hence, the hotness of a chili pepper grown in Mexico will be different from that of a pepper grown in say Arizona. However, good gardening practices can help retain the natural heat of the pepper.



Scoville Ratings of various peppers

Pepper Scoville Rating Pepper Scoville Rating
Pepperoncini 100 – 500 Hungarian Wax 5,000 – 10,000
Hungarian Paprika 100 – 500 Thai-Kung Pao 7,000 – 12,000
Sonora Pepper 300 – 600 Ancho Gigantea Pepper 1,000 – 15,000
New Mexico 6 Pepper 500 – 1,000 Serrano 6,000 – 23,000
NuMex Twilight Pepper 900 – 1,000 Serrano Tampiqueno Pepper 6,000 – 23,000
Aji Dulce 800 – 1,200 Royal Black pepper 5,000 – 30,000
Ancho Pepper 1,000 – 2,000 Yellow Peter Pepper 5,000 – 30,000
Poblano 1,000 – 2,000 Chile De Arbol Pepper 15,000 – 30,000
Numex Espanola Pepper 1,000 – 2,000 Tabasco 30,000 – 50,000
Pasilla Bajio Pepper 1,000 – 2,000 Long Red Slim Cayenne 30,000 – 50,000
Anaheim 500 – 2,500 Santaka Pepper 40,000 – 50,000
Numex-Big Jim 500 – 2,500 Fish Pepper 45,000 – 75,000
Garden Salsa 2000 – 4,500 Tepin Pepper 50,000 -100,000
Jalapeno 2,500 – 5,000 Jamaican Yellow Pepper 100,000 – 200,000
Mirasol Pepper 2,500 – 5,000 Habanero 100,000 – 350,000
Red Cherry Bomb 2,500 – 5,000 Carribean Red 400,000 – 460,000
Chimayo Pepper 4,000 – 6,000 Jamaican Hot Chocolate 300,000 – 500,000
Black Hungarian Pepper 5,000 – 10,000



We have all these peppers available at the Sweet Corn Organic Nursery store. If you have any questions about growing and harvesting peppers, we’d love to lend a helping hand.

Oh! and go easy on some of the spicy ones, they can be hotter than expected :)!