Dehydrated Jalapeno powder

I’ve dehydrated both fresh and pickled. I’ll process them both for seasoning powders and chunky applications.

For the fresh, in certain cases, do you preseason?

I like burn my mouth hot & spicy. I have a ton of the leftover vinegar. I don’t want to pickle them before drying, but I was thinking of adding vinegar, or maybe adding the dehydrated batch to vinegar afterwards for using as-is, in recipes, creating sauce(s), salsas, etc.

What are your favorite methods and applications?

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Me too… I’ve made both Jalapeno & Habanero fresh pasta.


Habanero Pasta.


Jalapeno Pasta.

Does that count as a possible use?? Its easy to control the heat by the number of peppers you incorporate into the pasta dough.

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What are your favorite methods and applications?

I’m not sure I understand the question, but I like preserving peppers by drying best, but frequently try to make a Scotch Bonnet hot sauce, a pickled pepper and cabbage recipe like pikliz, or a fermented pepper and cabbage mix like (Curtido!), and pickled Fresnos. I prefer Fresnos to Jalapenos, because I think they ripen to red faster, and their heat seems more predictable.

I think @bogman does some pepper preserving, and he responded to my question about Espellette, as did others.

These comments are with regard to fermenting, but there is also mention of pickling, and if course, fermented hot sauce.

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I’m really primarily interested in advice about the technical preparation strategy and versatile ingredient variations for jalapeno dehydration using my Nesco dehydrator.

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Long tome ahead!
I’ve dehydrated large quantities of jalapeños and other peppers.
It’s best to wear nitrile or other protective gloves when handling a lot of peppers.
Wash and de-stem the peppers.
Cut them in half lengthwise and remove the core, seeds. The heat is in the core and septae, “veins”.
Set the dehydrator to 120°F, 49°C and space the peppers on the trays in a single layer so they barely don’t touch. You can space them widely if there’s plenty of space in the dehydrator.
Drying time depends on the peppers’ sizes and ambient humidity (the air being sucked in by the dehydrator). Usually 24-48 hours is enough. The peppers will feel hard and brittle when done. If in doubt, give them another 12-24 hours drying.
*Note: Some very hot peppers (e.g. Carolina Reaper) may release irritating fumes while they dry; process them outdoors on a porch or well ventilated room. Also, I’ve had plastic-bodied dehydrators fail and nearly catch fire. Position them away from anything flammable, just in case!

For long-term storage, the best method involves vacuum-sealing mason jars with oxygen absorbers in with the peppers. Many vacuum sealers have attachments to pull air out of mason jars.

Before taking the peppers out of the dehydrator, assemble mason jars and lids (clean and dry), vacuum sealer and packets of 300cc size oxygen absorbers (for quart-sized jars).

Once taken out of the dehydrator, it’s best to seal them up before they pick up moisture from the air. If you want to powder some, this is the time. I use smaller, half pint, wide mouth mason jars for powders. Powdering hot peppers can produce very irritating dust! Wear eye protection and at least an N95 type mask. I have a special “dry blade” for powdering in an old Vitamix blender.

Put the peppers and or powder (packed tightly) into jars, drop an oxygen absorber into each and vacuum seal the jars. With powders, the seal can fail because powder gets sucked up in the sealing process. Pack the powder tightly and leave about an 3/4 inch head space above the powder.

This method can preserve dried peppers for many years, if stored dark and reasonably cool.

Other methods, like storing in airtight jars also work for shorter term storage. Freezing extends storage life. Be sure to put a date on the jars.

Due to capsaicinoids, oily resins in the peppers, I don’t recommend vacuum bags for storage. I don’t trust plastics in this application since it’s possible plasticizers could leach into the peppers. Plasticizers are used to condition plastics and are toxic. If you want to use a plastic vacuum bag, first make an envelope out of aluminum foil to contain the peppers and put that in the vacuum bags before sealing. (I’ve done this with hops.)

As with other vegetables, you can roast the peppers before dehydrating, but they’ll be harder to de-seed, handle. They may also drip juices before drying out some. You can also smoke the peppers outdoors, in a low-fire smoker or grill. Repeat applications using a smoke pistol can also work. However! Smoking means the dehydrator will expel a strong smoky smell; best done outdoors.

Whole peppers can be dried, but take far longer to dry; we’re talking adding days. Thin-walled peppers, like cayenne, Korean can be left whole, but I still cut them in half and remove seeds; it’s easier when they’re fresh and speeds up drying. With very pointy peppers, splitting the pointy tip can help a lot. This area tends to trap moisture, especially in moister peppers like Korean and Thai types.

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Beetlejuice!

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Long tome #2.

Thanks for all that. Fundamentally, that matches the way I go about dehydrating.

Oxygen absorbers. I never knew what they were called or precisely how they function, or they could be purchased, but I assume you are referring to, i.e., the little packets you commonly find in bottles of vitamins, low dose aspirin, etc., and are for the purpose of maintaining or at least extending freshness?

Can they be reused? How long are they effective? Are there different sizes or strengths for different applications?

I’m generally concerned about the how to go about the science of getting the best results, and engage in methods that will result in a product that has been compromised by wrong temperatures, dehydration times, or whatever else might be a factor.

When I comes to Jalapenos, for instance, I don’t want compromise their flavor and strength by processing them incorrectly.

I was led to this curiosity in a response to my experience with dehydrating onions. Sometimes when I use them, they result in a “leathery string” texture, extremely chewy, not at all what you would expect from your typical onion dip. Have they been “over-dehydrated”? These are from batches that are sliced and go straight to the dehydrator, unlike when I create “carmelized” onions in the crock pot, and then get dehydrated.

I’ve thought about dehydrating roasted peppers, even tho they lose “potency” heat-wise. When it comes to dehydrating roasted peppers, why couldn’t you de-deed before roasting? I can understand how tedious it would be to de-seed, and peel (if that’s what you prefer) a large batch of these roasted peppers, but is there a reason why they can’t be de-seeded before roasting?

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those are desiccant packets which are designed to absorb moisture, not oxygen.

ok. How long do they last? Reuse?

Oxygen absorbers are little packets that primarily are put in food products. They’re mostly iron powder, with a few other ingredients that, in the presence of oxygen, form rust inside the packet. This grabs oxygen out of a sealed container, prolonging the shelf life of dehydrated or freeze dried foods. They help preserve flavor, vitamins, sometimes color, and greatly slow the rancidity of oils.

The most common sizes are 300cc and 500cc. Generally, one uses one or two 300cc packets per quart jar, more if there’s a lot of air space. The same goes for the 500cc, which are mostly used for gallon-sized containers. They cannot be reused. They’re pretty cheap. Normally, they are sold in packets of ten or more. So if you have one or two jars to process, you’re left with unused packets which will go bad in 20-40 minutes, on average. If you have. vacuum sealer, you can quickly seal them up in a vacuum bag for later use. In an airtight, sealed jar, the oxygen will be removed until the seal is broken, the jar opened. Oxygen absorbers create a slight vacuum, if the jar is properly sealed.

Dehydrated onions should be dried at about 100°F, 38°C until brittle. To soften, cover with hot water and soak for around 15 minutes, then drain. In some onion varieties, you may need to remove one layer past the skins, one white layer, to avoid fiber. I’ve freeze dried onions, and they resemble those found in instant dips or soups; they rehydrate quickly.

Peppers can be deseeded before roasting, but they’ll dry out quickly at roasting temperatures. Whole peppers have the skin intact (initially); so they dry out slower and the roasted flavor can develop better. Removing the skins after roasting or flaming gives one a better product and it dries quicker. Both peppers and tomatoes can have cellophane-like skins after drying and reconstituting. With peppers, it greatly depends on the variety; some, like New Mexico types (e.g.Joe E Parker) have very tough skins.

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Thanks for the info on the Oxygen absorbers. They don’t apply to my home cook situation, but nice to know.

Your dehydrated onions comments will be very helpful, and I’ll continue to roast only whole jalapenos before tossing into a plastic bag to help skin removal. Do you have a preferred freezing method for the onions?

Onions tend to turn to mush if frozen straight away. They also can release their odor in the freezer, if not packed correctly. Slice and fry them first, to a little browning. Then pack them tightly in as small a jar as possible, with an airtight lid. You can use freezer tape to insure a seal on many jars. You can also roast onions before freezing, but the prior method is easier to pack with less air space. With roasted garlic and fried onions, I don’t trust freezer bags.

Oxygen absorbers come in very handy for a variety of uses. As a “home cook”, I use them to:
Keep whole coffee beans sealed and fresh.
Pack grains, freshly-ground whole wheat flour and cornmeal from getting stale, rancid or insects.
Keep dehydrated foods fresh for much longer.

And, as I have a home-model freeze drier, they get packed with freeze dried foods, so they’ll keep for many years, sealed in mylar.

As in your situation, they may be too much of a twiddle unless one processes or stores a lot of food, which I usually do.

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