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Fresh Chile Prep

By Cook's Illustrated Published July 2010

In some chiles, the level of capsaicin is so high, it can actually irritate the skin.

To protect your hands, wear disposable latex gloves when handling them (a plastic zipper-lock bag on one hand will also do in a pinch). This advice holds true whether you’re working with fresh or dried chiles.

Removing Seeds and Ribs

To tamp down the fire, remove the seeds and ribs before adding chiles to a dish. You can always reserve the seeds to add later to the finished dish.

1. Cut chile in half lengthwise with knife.

2. Starting opposite stem end, run edge of melon baller, teaspoon, or grapefruit spoon along inside of chile, scraping out seeds and ribs.