Thursday, October 7, 2010

Drying Peppers

The curse of the cayenne is lifted! And just look at how pretty these fruits are.

Drying Cayenne Peppers
Drying Cayenne Peppers

My last batch of dried cayenne was ruined by mold during the drying process, so i'll be drying about half in this fashion, and half in my dehydrator. You want the fruit not in direct sun, with plenty of ventilation, and away from humidity. I just tie a string with a needle at the end to something, in this case a window shade cloth thing and string up the peppers as i pick them. Cayennes will complete their turning red off the vine, so feel free to pick them when they show some sign of red - the more you pick the more the plant will set fruit. Once these are all dry i'll take them down and store them in a sealed jar - cracking some for chilly flakes in a separate jar. If you live in a dryer climate you can leave them strung around and take them down as needed - but i think that's how my last batch ended up molding. It is not dry here (despite what people from Houston or Hawaii may think).

Most of the peppers i grow are fleshy and don't dry well, so to store them for later seasons i have to use freezer space or pickle/can them for the cupboard. I had a HUGE thai pepper plant that should have given me lots of dryable peppers - out of that whole plant i got TWO tiny little peppers suitable only for a miniature dollhouse. I'm also growing a tabasco plant that supposedly ripens to red then dries, but i'll be picking most of them in their earlier, yellow stage. I put spice in everything i cook and have been very sadly without my own grown dried peppers. I'm ready to be back in action!

Drying Cayenne Peppers

This post seen in Simple Lives Thursday.

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