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Newb, drying peppers questions

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I did a search and didn't find specifically what I was looking for.

I love jalapenos, and grew quite a bit of them this past year.  I usually slice and pickle them and eat them when we have tacos, chile, etc. However, this past summer I had an abundance, more than I wanted to pickle, and ended up losing about two gallons.

I may want to try smoking a few sometime, but right now I'm more interested in just drying them out to preserve.

So, a few questions:  

 

I don't have a dehydrator so can I use my MES at say, 90° or so to just dry them?  Or what temp should be used?

 

How long would this take?

 

Would they be fine to keep vacuum sealed or would they also need to be refrigerated? Or frozen?

 

Will they "rehydrate" if soaked in water?  Is this necessary?

 

Do they need to be split open or the insides removed before drying?

 

My feeling was to find a way to preserve so they won't go to waste.  I'm not really interested at this point in grinding them into powders, rather I'd probably use them through the winter/spring for seasoning, chopped up in burritos, salsas, fajitas, chile, etc.  

 

I know people sometimes string them up and hang them to dry. I usually notice this more often with a thin skinny pepper like a cayenne. Don't know if this would work with a meatier and juicier jalapeno, especially as humid as it is here and thus, looking for possibility to dehydrate quickly in a (smoke free) smoker.

post #2 of 8

You might be better off drying them in the oven. I dry whole jalapeno's (and others) Just cut the stem off. I have not tried to rehydrate them. I grind most of mine. Although I have dropped whole ones in a pot of beans or stew. Freezing without drying makes mushey chiles. But they still cook well. CF

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chilefarmer View Post
 

You might be better off drying them in the oven. I dry whole jalapeno's (and others) Just cut the stem off. I have not tried to rehydrate them. I grind most of mine. Although I have dropped whole ones in a pot of beans or stew. Freezing without drying makes mushey chiles. But they still cook well. CF

My oven's lowest setting is 175°.  I don't want to cook them, just dry them out and that's why I wondered about the MES at a low temperature.

 

I knew freezing them whole would turn them to mush and that's kinda why i'm looking for an alternative.

 

Thanks.

post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by WNC Goater View Post
 

I did a search and didn't find specifically what I was looking for.

I love jalapenos, and grew quite a bit of them this past year.  I usually slice and pickle them and eat them when we have tacos, chile, etc. However, this past summer I had an abundance, more than I wanted to pickle, and ended up losing about two gallons.

I may want to try smoking a few sometime, but right now I'm more interested in just drying them out to preserve.

So, a few questions:  

 

I don't have a dehydrator so can I use my MES at say, 90° or so to just dry them?  Or what temp should be used? I would go about 125° or so. Your MES won't do 90°

 

How long would this take? Depends on size I would say 4-8 hours.

 

Would they be fine to keep vacuum sealed or would they also need to be refrigerated? Or frozen? You can vacuum seal or just zip-lock bag. They are now dry. I grind a lot and put in a shaker.

 

Will they "rehydrate" if soaked in water?  Is this necessary? Yes No

 

Do they need to be split open or the insides removed before drying? I do. No you don't have to It just takes days if you don't.

 

My feeling was to find a way to preserve so they won't go to waste.  I'm not really interested at this point in grinding them into powders, rather I'd probably use them through the winter/spring for seasoning, chopped up in burritos, salsas, fajitas, chile, etc.  

 

I know people sometimes string them up and hang them to dry. I usually notice this more often with a thin skinny pepper like a cayenne. Don't know if this would work with a meatier and juicier jalapeno, especially as humid as it is here and thus, looking for possibility to dehydrate quickly in a (smoke free) smoker.

I hope this helps.

Happy smoken.

David

post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the help.  Looking forward to a bumper crop this year.  In the meantime, I may buy a batch from WallyWorld and try drying some as an experiment.

 

Bet some of those would be good chopped up fine in summer sausage or a fatty.

post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by WNC Goater View Post
 

Thanks for the help.  Looking forward to a bumper crop this year.  In the meantime, I may buy a batch from WallyWorld and try drying some as an experiment.

 

Bet some of those would be good chopped up fine in summer sausage or a fatty.

I use them in all kinds of things. I always try to have some on hand. I can sprinkle some on eggs or steaks. I mostly grind mine.

Happy smoken.

David

post #7 of 8

For a real treat let your jalapenos ripen to red, dry and smoke them with hickory. Now you have chipotle chiles. Course you can smoke all chiles for better flavor. CF

post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by chilefarmer View Post
 

For a real treat let your jalapenos ripen to red, dry and smoke them with hickory. Now you have chipotle chiles. Course you can smoke all chiles for better flavor. CF

Smoked peppers are always good. I do that also before I dry them.

Happy smoken.

David

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