How to dry hot peppers

So I went overboard with the peppers this year.  I have already pulled in enough jalapenos for 50+ jars of Cowboy Candy. The peppers keep coming. I used to just food-processor chop up what I didn’t eat by the end of the season and freeze it for use the following year. I would need 3 gallons of storage in the freezer this year if I did that again. Then a few weeks ago I noticed THIS on the ovens I installed a couple years back:

Took a while to put it together, but this year I’m drying and grinding the peppers. So, I made cowboy candy out of the green and red jalapenos and went to work on the Orange habs, yellow Trinidads, red Trinidads and red ghost peppers:

Drying as a preservative is not a new art. The trick is to dry them and not COOK them. Getting them dry is what keeps them preserved and from getting moldy. It’s a very simple food storage method that’s been around for eons. Any dehydrator should work fine or you can even use the warm setting on one of those primitive stone-age ovens that doesn’t have a built in dehydrate setting and just crack the door open to keep it at 150 degrees.

Start by slicing them in half. They dry way faster this way. Spread them out on cookie sheets and such cut side up so none of them are touching.

Throw them in the oven until they are dry. I mean really dry, like dry enough that a breeze will blow them across the counter. If they are still pliable at all, they aren’t dry enough. They should just crumble to pieces and weigh seemingly nothing when they are done. The little ghost peppers took about 12 hours and the big fat Trinidads took about 24 to dry.

Once they in drying, time for a break. Pro tip: wash your hands BEFORE going to the bathroom.
Once they are all dry, take them out and just throw them into a chopper/grinder and grind them up real fine like.

Here’s another warning: When you ground these, there’s going to be a dusting of pepper talc that comes out of that grinder straight into your face no matter how careful you are. Wear a mask.
Sift it into a cup or something. The go back and re-grind the seeds and pieces that don’t make it through the sifter.

Once all ground  up, just put them into your favorite little air-tight shakers and they’ll last well past next season!


Author: admin