Ají cacho de cabra o cacho de venado
Ajì cacho de cabra or cacho de venado is the fruit of an annual plant of the Solanacee family, typical of the coasts of Peru and Chile. The name comes from its peculiar shape, which resembles goat or deer horns. In Chile, it is often used by Mapuche communities in La Araucania.
In Peru, it is found almost exclusively in the Departamento of Lambayequem, on the northern Peruvian coast. Here, the cultivation of ajì cacho de cabra is concentrated in the fertile valleys in the provinces of Chiclayo and Lambayeque. One of the most important pre-Spanish civilizations of Peru developed here: the Moche. Many archaeological excavations unearthed ceramic vases depicting the food eaten by the Moche, including ajì (probably of the species).
Very often, this plant is grown in combination with other plants of the Capsicum genus in this area, such as cerezo and limo norteño.
The plant favors hot climates, little rain, clay or sandy soils. It is sown in winter, while fruits are harvested at the beginning of summer. The fruit has a slim and pointed shape; the color ranges from green to deep red. Its taste is rather hot and aromatic.
In the local cuisine, it is used fresh, together with ajì cerezo, to make sauces or to season traditional local dishes, such as causa lambayecana (made with mashed potatoes, salted fish, onions, vinegar and ají, accompanied by yuca, platano, camote, or choclo) and arroz con pato (rice cooked with chicha de jora, coriander, duck meat, and ají).
The product can only be found at local markets and more and more often people prefer more commercial varieties.