An Anarchy of Chillies
by Caz Hildebrand
‘A must for anyone who’s serious about their chillies, graphic design, or both.’ Yotam Ottolenghi
Chillies have captured the imagination of contemporary chefs and consumers. They flavour myriad foods from curry to chocolate. An Anarchy of Chilies takes a close look at a hundred chillies, describing their heat, history and suggested uses.
The thousands of chilli cultivars originate from only five domesticated species. Nearly the hottest in the book – Dorset Nagar – was bred as recently as 2006, but chilli history is ancient. They were used in Mexico around 7000 B.C. (the name itself derives from an Aztec word), and were brought to Europe by Christopher Columbus in the 1490s.
Over a century ago the Scoville Heat Unit was devised to test what Hildebrand describes as the ‘heat and fire’ of the chillies. She has arranged the book using this scale, moving from the mildest capisum at 0-100 units, right the way through to the Carolina Reaper at over 2 million!
Caz Hildebrand is an award-winning designer of books by Nigella Lawson, Yotam Ottolenghi and Sam & Sam Clark of Moro. Here she has been inspired by the separation involved in the four-colour printing process to create vibrant illustrations of each chilli. While still being informative, they are a dazzlingly bold take on conventional botanical illustration and explode off the page.
Dimensions: H:5.4cm, W:18.3cm, D:2.5cm
Illustrations: 120 colour illustrations