Paper Lantern

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Paul79
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Paper Lantern

Post by Paul79 » Mon Aug 11, 2014 8:46 pm

Paper Lantern Pod Review (Again courtesy of Lee aka Flecam)

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Beautiful looking pod, appears to be a good size also.

As you can see I removed the stalk and cut the pod in half (I have to apologise for the poor photography).

Surprisingly thicker walls than I had suspected. Popped both halves in my mouth and began to chew, I had been looking forward to trying this.

Crunchy walls, nice initial juicy burst, very subtle flavour coming through that is fruity, nothing overwhelming, hint of sweetness to it also but it's all very subtle flavours, nothing that dominates or over powers which can happen with some pods. A really crunchy juicy pod with a great subtle taste.

No normal Habanero taste which surprises me but in a good way. No initial aggressive heat like you get with Habs either, again a pleasant surprise.

It takes about 40 seconds to start feeling the heat, front of tongue, all on the the top of the front of the tongue, getting quiet hot. No tears, passed the minute mark, heading towards the 90 second mark and still no tears, quite surprising. Tongue is really going off though, no where else in the mouth is burning, just the tongue. I can feel a bit of burn down the food pipe towards my stomach but its nothing major.

Tears have finally started, it's about the 2 minute mark right now, I've reached for some milk to, the intention is to drown my tongue as the burn is surprisingly hot on the tongue. No sweating with this pod, so it's not overly hot just an aggressive burn on the tongue.

Heat and burn on the tongue is continuing to ramp up, first pint of milk was downed quite rapidly. All tongue burn as I mentioned. It's hot but not something to worry about and it does have that habanero burn but not instant burn like I got with the Orange Hab and the Peach Hab.

I ended up have two pints of milk with this, once the tears started they kept going for a good few minutes. The tongue stayed lit up for some time, it's now been 15 mins since finishing the pod and the tongue is still tingling, my stomach feels a bit ropey though.

After about 21-22 mins everything had settled down to what I would say was a comfortable almost back to normal level, my stomach realised it had eating something that didn't quite agree with but it wasn't the same feeling as the other habs.

This is a subtle but stunning flavour, absolutely wonderful in my opinion, definitely worth another attempt next year.

Key points from this pod for me are
No dominating Habanero taste which is a plus in my opinion
No aggressive instant burn like a normal Habanero, another plus
It's taste is quite subtle
Crunch walls with an initial juicy burst
Best tasting Habanero I've tried

az1000
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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by az1000 » Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:43 pm

My Paper Lantern , seeds from Slyboy.ImageImage She had a flavor just as you described , very subtlle Chinense . Was no so hot , well below Habanero.

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by ChilliJez » Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:44 pm

Good review Paul. My experiences concur with yours and Nikolau.

When I've grown paper lantern it's never been the most attention grabbing fruit but I've found I keep choosing it to use quite often. Not massive pods but loads of them and a good fruity flavour.

For me too they aren't as hot as a Hab and that's a good thing!

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by Leif » Wed Oct 01, 2014 10:47 pm

I grew these this year from a plant I bought on impulse in a local garden centre. It was raised by Suttons Seeds and called Paper lantern. My guess is they started the seeds in early February. they describe it as early and productive. I grew mine outdoors in a bed (clay soil) under a coldframe:

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As you can see it was healthy with a decent number of pods, but not fantastic, at least 20. Pods are about 5cm long, turning from green to orange to red. Here is a pod alongside a rocoto:

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The plant is fairly early, I had ripe pods in mid september, which is better than my first season rocoto, but later than the Hungarian black. So, for a C. chinense they are early. As far as the pods go, they have a fruity taste, rather like rocoto, and quite unlike habanero. Heat wise I'd rate them as 1/4 habanero, so rather mild. At the end of the day this is a nice enough chilli, and early for the species, but it lacks heat and has none of the lovely flavour of habanero and other C. chinense varieties. I can put a whole chilli in a meal for one person, and it gives a mild heat, and no real flavour comes through. So I don't think it is worth bothering with.

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by NinjaStream » Thu Oct 30, 2014 4:44 pm

The Paper Lantern has been on my grow list since I first encountered them 4 years ago. They have an amazing sweet fruity flavour that I find hard to describe because it's unique to them. I agree that the heat is lower than Habs but is enough to make me not want to eat a whole one raw.
I often use these for flavour when cooking and add other varieties for heat if it's required.

In my opinion heat is easy to achieve when it comes to chillies, but flavour as good as this is VERY rare.
**Highly recommended**

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by wackojacko » Sat Sep 03, 2016 9:21 pm

Lots of pods too! I've just taken 30 off for the 2nd time this summer and confident of getting a few more by October!

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by Mitzi » Fri Dec 16, 2016 6:11 pm

Leif wrote: As far as the pods go, they have a fruity taste, rather like rocoto, and quite unlike habanero. Heat wise I'd rate them as 1/4 habanero, so rather mild. At the end of the day this is a nice enough chilli, and early for the species, but it lacks heat and has none of the lovely flavour of habanero and other C. chinense varieties. I can put a whole chilli in a meal for one person, and it gives a mild heat, and no real flavour comes through. So I don't think it is worth bothering with.


This was similar to my experience; I bought a paper lantern plant from the garden centre this spring, and put it on a south facing windowsill in the house. It just sat there, not growing, for a long time. Eventually it decided to do something but didn't fruit until September and then took months to ripen. Eagerly awaited; the label says it's hotter than a regular habanero, so I was cautious. I removed the seeds and sliced the flesh onto a pizza. There was only the slightest sensation of heat on my lips, and pretty much none in the mouth / throat. Husband says he couldn't detect it at all. I'm not a heat freak by any means but this was a big disappointment.

I wonder whether the growing conditions and/or slow ripening led to the lack of heat? Or whether the garden centre specimens of this plant are a poor example of the variety?

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by ChilliJez » Sat Dec 17, 2016 4:45 pm

Mitzi wrote:
Leif wrote: As far as the pods go, they have a fruity taste, rather like rocoto, and quite unlike habanero. Heat wise I'd rate them as 1/4 habanero, so rather mild. At the end of the day this is a nice enough chilli, and early for the species, but it lacks heat and has none of the lovely flavour of habanero and other C. chinense varieties. I can put a whole chilli in a meal for one person, and it gives a mild heat, and no real flavour comes through. So I don't think it is worth bothering with.


This was similar to my experience; I bought a paper lantern plant from the garden centre this spring, and put it on a south facing windowsill in the house. It just sat there, not growing, for a long time. Eventually it decided to do something but didn't fruit until September and then took months to ripen. Eagerly awaited; the label says it's hotter than a regular habanero, so I was cautious. I removed the seeds and sliced the flesh onto a pizza. There was only the slightest sensation of heat on my lips, and pretty much none in the mouth / throat. Husband says he couldn't detect it at all. I'm not a heat freak by any means but this was a big disappointment.

I wonder whether the growing conditions and/or slow ripening led to the lack of heat? Or whether the garden centre specimens of this plant are a poor example of the variety?
I've grown it a few years ago, for 2 or 3 seasons, and again this year. Pods this year were bigger, later, fewer and not quite the same shape. Similar mild to warm heat though. I think there's some variation in the plant material available. Growing conditions may have had a bearing too but not to the point of being heatless. Garden Centres can often be unreliable.

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Re: Paper Lantern

Post by tobrien1 » Sat May 06, 2017 5:46 pm

I picked one of these up from a garden centre this year, it's got a few buds ready to flower already. Looking forward to some early pods hopefully.

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