Good things come in small packages: the Puya Chile is similar in appearance to the dried Guajillo Chile, but is smaller and packs a bigger "kick." Long and thin red peppers that ripen to a purplish crimson color, Puya Chiles have a fruity flavor, containing sharp fruit and cherry tones. In terms of spiciness, the Puya Chile features dry, dusty intense heat and a Scoville heat unit rating of 5,000 - 8,000.
The Puya Chile is a popular ingredient in Mexican cooking. Its origin dates back to early Central America. Puya Chile is excellent for flavoring sauces, salsas, and stews, even as a pizza topping or spicy pasta filling. Puya Chile can be used alongside Guajillo chiles to make any dish more "piquant". You can also mix the Puya with other mild chiles like New Mexico chile for a richer, hotter sauce.
In some recipes, the Puya Chile is used only for its flavor and not for its flesh. In this case, the puya chile is soaked for some minutes in water or roasted at high heat and then pureed or diced.