Mamta's Kitchen

Forum Thread - Kashmiri chilli powder

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Mamta, on 25/10/2015 01:22pm

That last post is from me, forgot to log in!!!

AGrygus, on 8/8/2016 08:19pm

I stumbled across this thread while updating my Indian Chilis Web page ( and found the conversation interesting.

One subject was about hot green chilis having interesting flavors but being too hot to enjoy. That is true, until you've made your sacrifices to the Chili Gods. The sacrifice they ask pain, but it is only temporary. Once the sacrifices have been made, you can enjoy the flavors, and "afterburn" is just a faded memory.

The way we do our sacrifices here in Los Angeles is to have our lunches in a Thai restaurant (we have at least 100 of them here) until we can order everything "extra spicy" and enjoy it, especially with added nam pla prik (hot green chili in fish sauce and vinegar).

The hot pain of chilis is a false signal, no actual damage is being done. Eventually, with exposure, the nerve receptors get tired of it and decide not to bother sending the signals any more.

AGrygus, on 8/8/2016 08:25pm

That link doesn't work unless you remove the closing parentheses.

Helen Bach, on 9/8/2016 10:02pm

nice site, AGrygus, nothing confusing. I would agree with all that you have shown.

FWIW, I researched Indian chilies a few years ago (when I was on call for 12 hours a night!) and must have looked at ALL the sites having anything on Indian chillies.

I found info on about 300 varieties, about 30 common named cultivars and about 30 cross variants, the rest were mostly research types including one who's seeds had been through a nuclear reactor!

The Kanthari white I was given samples of when I was in Bangalore, a man from Kerala sent them over. They are more ivory than white, but my samples contained yellow, orange and red variants, and some were round (NOT Mundu!).

The real/genuine chilli from Kashmir is as you suggest. I spent an afternoon looking through a friends bag of chillies he bought and brought back from Kashmir. I managed to separate them into 21 different morphological variants, in the end, I think I could see that each was a combination of sanam and reshampati. The sanam is the commonest chilli in India (about 75% of all chillies grown in India are sanam) and is the one that is straight down one side and curved the other. Only available dried in the UK.


AGrygus, on 10/8/2016 04:26am

Your comments are very helpful to me.

I try to be accurate in matters of India, because my Web site's second largest audience, after the United States, is India, accounting for as many page views as GB and Canada combined.

Anton, on 4/12/2018 11:25am

I'm a little confused my self. Recently when in India i bought a bottle of Kashmiri paprika. The ingredients however state 100% ground Kashmiri chillies!? So still confused i tried some on chicken and it was fantastic. Slightly sweet tangy with just a hint of hot and a stunning colour. So have i got Kashmiri paprika or chilli? The brand is Keya.

Mamta, on 5/12/2018 06:35am

Hello Anton

In India, chillies and peppers are rarely sold by their names, usually just as mild, hot, very hot or colour chillies. But things may have changed in recent years. I often buy mild chilli powder and end up finding it is too hot for me.

In India, sweet paprika is generally labelled and sold as 'rang wali mirchi' or 'chilli for colour'. Generally speaking, Kashmiri chillies are milder and used more for colour and flavour than their heat. May be that is why they labelled your Kashmiri chillies as paprika, I don't know.

I almost always add Kashmiri chilli powder that I buy from Indian store, to my tandoori mix, because I hate using the red colour that restaurants in UK do. It gives tandoori dishes a nice colour and flavour.

While you have it, try adding a little to your tomato soup, it gives a lovely flavour, as well as colour and a mild heat.

This is a relatively good description;


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Helen, on 7/12/2018 02:08am

sounds like the chillies you bought are of the Byadgi type, almost exclusively sold as 'Kashmiri' chillies (which are not very red!). My very best advice (which I follow!) is to buy fresh chillies, and let them dry (discard any suspect ones). Then grind these down if you want the powder, adding ground paprika if you want a redder colour and/or milder result. Also, one can buy smoked paprika, which adds a little, um, smokiness to the proceedings, great for tandoori dishes if you haven't got a tandoor!


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