Dehydrating Bell Peppers (simple)

containertedOctober 25, 2008

For my wife, who is "skeptic control central", what should one do to dry regular green bell peppers in a dehydrator? I say cut into slices and let her fly. Is there any special to put on the slices?? I intend to make bell pepper flakes by crushing after drying and then storing for later recipes. What storing choices will I have??

Ted

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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

The dried pepper flakes will shink a LOT. My mom had cut peppers down to less than 1/2 inch sizes and smaller. Once dried they shrank to less than 1/4 inch and fell through the slats of trays. Suggest that you cut them a little bigger than 1/2 inch size. Remove the seeds and pith beforehand. Also cut away the stem and adjacent crown. I like allowing peppers to ripen more to red. Some do this indoors if they don't spoil first. Once you get them VERY dry in the dehydrator they can keep well in a Ball canning jar with lid and stored at room temp with no to low light, or in a plastic bag in the fridge (vegetable crisper). I have stored them both ways here. If I wish to get a ground up sweet pepper, I simply place some in a small coffee grinder (blendar type) and this will chop the dried pepper flakes into a course or fine powder. They need to dry very well in the dehydrator, to the point where the dried flakes with break when they are bent. Not drying enough will cause mold or clumping, or both.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 11:25AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Agree - cut in slices and then crumble when dried. Lots of water = lots of shrinkage. ;)

Dave

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 1:30PM
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containerted

Thanks. I had read everything on five forums trying to make sure there wasn't something to sprinkle on before starting the drying (like salt or pectin). I'll vacuum seal and freeze after they're dry. Skeptic Central will be more relaxed about the subject now.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 4:07PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Most things that dry like peppers, and herbs do quite well once stored in a vacuum, be it a Ball jar, or a FS plastic bag. The 5 pounds of dried peppers I have in the fridge are used to make italian sausages with sweet peppers and onions added. If I were to add fresh instead, the meat would be really watery and loose.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 5:49PM
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RuthieG__TX(z8 TX)

They dry beautifully with nothing on them...slice and dry and store...

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 6:55PM
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texanmomof10

What is the shelf life of dehydrated bell peppers when stored in vaccum sealed bags? Anyone know?

    Bookmark   May 26, 2010 at 12:48PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

I'd say almost indefinite. What I do notice over time is if exposed to sunlight there may be some color changes, but so far I haven't noticed any reduction in "heat".

The main thing is to be sure those peppers are absolutely dry. Once all the moisture is out they store beautifully at room temperature.

Carol

    Bookmark   May 26, 2010 at 3:25PM
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planatus(6)

If you have a smoker, you gotta try grilling/slow smoking some peppers before putting them in the dehydrator. Stinks up the dehydrator, but they are worth it.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2010 at 8:31PM
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bejay9_10(zone 9/10)

One small added note - I found cutting bulky peppers - like Bells and some of the fatter ones - worked better if they were cut in rings. This keeps them from curling over onto themselves as they will if cut into strips.

I also have recently been placing a "clean" dry silica gel packet in my jars for awhile to make sure they haven't retained some moisture. Works well with onion and garlic scapes - which have a tendency to mold also.

Just my 2 c's.

Bejay

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 9:46AM
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soleilmama

This is timely...a quick question: What should the dried peppers feel like? rubbery? brittle? bendy? I've got some in the dehydrator right now and not sure how long/far to go...thanks!

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 11:38AM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

I dry to the brittle stage. Rubbery or bendy means there's moisture left.

Carol

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 2:33PM
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jonas302(central mn 4)

yep dry to brittle when you are done put them in a mason jar turned upside down for a day to see if any moister collects

Texas they store a really long time it works real nice to put them in a mason jar with the lid vaccum sealed so you an get some out and reaseal

And yes the smoker is soo worth it(:

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 2:01PM
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