Ever been at the grocery store and come across jalapeno peppers with “stretch marks” and thought, “Nope!”? Well, it turns out that’s perfectly normal.
It’s called corking, and one Instagram user explained why those stretch marks appear.
The post is captioned: “It has been SO hot here (100+ for days on end and 80s at night), and then we randomly (thankfully) got 2.5 inches of rain a few days ago. The result? Stretched peppers! I think they look cooler this way anyway.”
In the video, the Instagrammer explains that this tends to happen when the pepper grows fast and the skin can’t keep up. It’s most common after heavy rainfall. They also pointed out that it does not affect the flavor but is more likely to happen to spicy peppers.
They were also kind enough to add that if you leave your jalapenos on the plant longer, they’ll turn red and be slightly sweeter.
Corking is more likely to happen in an area with plenty of water and sunlight for the pepper plant to grow.
Though there’s no scientific evidence to back it up, some people believe that peppers with stretch marks are hotter than those without them. The thought is that corking means a pepper is more mature, and mature peppers tend to be hotter.
If you’re growing jalapenos and want to prevent them from getting those unsightly stretch marks, it’s important not to overwater the plant. Picking the peppers when they’re young is another option. The longer they stay on the vine, the more likely it is that there will be some corking.
One commenter responded: “Thanks! It’s my first time growing them and I have three younguns already.”
Another commenter believed that stretch marks equal spicy, saying: “My Mexican husband was taught that the corking signified a pepper with increased heat and are sought after.”
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