The last batch of chipotle powder has been processed for the year. I use a lot of chipotle so it only made sense to make my own. Here is how to do it.
First, I smoke the ripe (red) jalapenos with mesquite for about 4 - 5 hours. I do a heavy smoke using a 10" cast iron pan full of mesquite chunks over a 1000W hotplate in my plywood smoker. After smoking, I put a small fan in the bottom of the plywood smoker and fully open the vents for airflow. During the warmer months it will only take a week to dry the peppers out. When temps drop below 70* I add a hotplate to keep temps around 90*.
I use some stainless steel racks during the smoking and drying phase to keep the peppers from rolling up and trapping moisture on the inside.
When they go into the smoker they are butted up against each other. You can see how much they shrink during dehydration.
And into the "spice mill" (really a coffee grinder) the dried and smoked peppers go.
After a couple grinds we end up with chipotle powder.
Packaged up to share with a friend.