Sweet banana and hot banana peppers taste similar but the hot banana pepper, also known as a yellow Hungarian wax pepper, packs some heat. The two varieties thrive under similar conditions, but they are commonly separated in the garden to avoid cross-pollination. You can easily add complex flavor or subtle heat to a dish by incorporating fresh or pickled banana peppers. Both hot and sweet banana peppers can be eaten raw, pickled, stuffed and fried, or diced and added to chili, stews and sauces.

Things You'll Need


Pickled

Rinse the whole sweet or hot banana peppers under cold running water.

Make a 1/2-inch-long incision into the flesh on either side of the banana pepper with the tip of the knife.

Combine distilled water, white vinegar, oregano and pickling salt in a saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.

Reduce the heat to low when the brine reaches a boil and simmer for an additional five minutes.

Put the olive oil, garlic cloves and sweet or hot banana peppers in the sterile pint jar, leaving a half-inch space at the top.

Pour hot brine into the jar slowly as you move the peppers around with a wooden chopstick to evenly distribute the liquid and release air bubbles. Leave half an inch of unfilled space at the top of the jar.

Wipe down the rim of the jar with a paper towel and cover the jar with the sterile lid.

Allow the jar to cool for about an hour on the counter before tightening the sterile screw band and moving the jar to the refrigerator.

Wait six to eight weeks to remove the jar of pickled banana peppers from the refrigerator and open it. Eat the peppers alone or add them to salads, appetizers and pickle platters.

Reseal the jar and return it to the refrigerator for up to a month before using all the sweet or hot banana peppers.

Stuffed

Pour the oil into the Dutch oven and place it over medium heat. Insert the candy thermometer to monitor the oil’s temperature.

Rinse the whole sweet or hot banana peppers under cold running water and place them on a cutting board.

Make a single slit that runs the entire length of the pepper on one side, leaving the pepper open yet intact.

Scrape out the seeds with the tip of the knife, and then rinse the knife and peppers under cold running water.

Dry the inside and outside of all the sweet or hot banana peppers with paper towels.

Combine the ground lamb, garlic, feta, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl and stuff the inner cavity of the banana peppers with a couple tablespoons of the stuffing blend.

Combine the eggs and milk in a shallow dish using a fork and pour the flour into a separate shallow dish.

Dip each stuffed pepper into the egg and milk wash, and then into the flour so that is it fully coated.

Lower the stuffed pepper gently into the oil when it reaches 350 to 365 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lift the stuffed peppers from the oil with a pair of tongs when they are golden brown. This will usually take between three and five minutes depending on the size of the banana pepper. Place the banana peppers on paper towels to cool and drain for a couple of minutes before eating.

Raw

Rinse the whole sweet or hot banana peppers under cold running water and place them on a cutting board.

Scrape out the seeds with the tip of the knife, and rinse the knife and peppers under cold running water.

Eat the peppers raw or dice them into bite-size chunks to be added to a chili, stew or sauce. The chunks of pepper should cook in the chili, stew or sauce for at least 30 minutes before serving so they soften and impart their flavor to the dish.