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post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

(This recipe uses a Little or Big Chief smokehouse and came from www.smokehouseproducts.com. If you're not using one of these, consult the instructions that came with your smoker. this recipe is written for jalapeños, but should work for any chile pepper.)

The smoky spice of the chipotle makes them my favorite flavor addition to almost any dish. This obsession has lead to a quest for the perfect smoked jalapeño created at home.

The ideal chipotle will start with homegrown jalapeños fresh from the garden. Firm, ripe chiles are the best choice. You may use either red or green jalapeños, but the red jalapeños have a better flavor. If there are holes or soft spots in your jalapeños, save them for fresh uses where you can slice out the affected areas. Cut off the stems before smoking the peppers. You may also slit the peppers in half to remove the seeds, or cut small slits to let out the moisture and let the smoke in. One pound of fresh peppers will end up as one tenth of a pound of chipotles.

In Mexico, pecan wood is most commonly used to smoke chipotles. If you do not have ready access to pecan wood, any wood from a fruit tree will make a good substitute. Try smoking with apple or pear wood. Hickory or oak or a combination of the two may also be used.

After washing the chiles, you can start your smoker. Once the smoker has started smoking , lay the chiles side by side on your grill - do not stack them on top of each other. The goal of smoking peppers is a slow flavor infusion. To keep the chiles from falling through the grill, make a tray of aluminum foil, use a disposable foil pan, or try our Smokehouse Drying Screens. Insert the grill rack into the smoker and close the smoker.

Check the peppers periodically throughout the smoking and rotate their position in the smoker to maintain even smoking. The chipotles are complete when they become ugly, shriveled, hard brown objects that don't look too appetizing. This may take as long as six to eight hours. Be sure to check the chiles every hour when you check the fuel pan.

After removing the chipotles from the smoker, place them on a rack and loosely cover them. Leave at room temperature for a week or two, depending on the humidity, to continue the drying process. I keep my finished chipotles in small cleaned airtight butter containers stored at room temperature. This way you do not need to let air into all of them each time you open the container. The less often you use chipotles, the smaller your storage containers should be. Stored properly, you can keep your chipotles for one to two years.

Chipotles can be crumbled by hand, run through a blender to create a powder, or re-hydrated by soaking in hot water for 30 minutes or so, then blended into a sauce.

If you find that you like the flavor of home-smoked peppers, don't stop with jalapeños. Experiment with other peppers, like Anaheim chiles, too!
post #2 of 7
POINTS..............great post...........i have bookmarked it, as i plan on making my own chipoltes this fall, after harverst...............
post #3 of 7

Any Idea on the Temp?

I didn't see a sugested temperature for smoking the peppers. We grow a lot of Jalepenos at my house every year and would love to try this.

post #4 of 7
Thanks for the post, I've been wondering about making my own chipotles. Do they get dry enough to turn it into a powder or do you need to put them in a dehydrator? Also what temp do you do them at?
post #5 of 7
Very good post. The only variation I use is that after coming out of the smoker, I put them in a dehydrator at a low temp. I agree about the red chile being tastier, fresh or smoked.
post #6 of 7
Very nice. I agree about the dehydrator. Speeds up the process quite a bit. You should try with habaneros!
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
not sure of the "exact" temperature, but since the chief smokers seem to be calibrated for around 165 degrees, i will guess that low and slow is the way to go. as for dehydration, it looks like the low heat and the smoke should work together to achieve that goal. judging by the description in the instructions, it looks like they should be as dry as possible.

i've never tried this, but i hope to later this year if i can grow some chiles.
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