How to smoke dry chili peppers

Before you begin, remember to always wear gloves when you’re handling chili peppers, and wash your hands before touching your face after you’ve been cooking. Chili peppers are not also hot to taste but could burn your skin, so be careful.

If you’re only roasted a small number of chili peppers (between 4 and 12), a gas stove will work just fine. You can use a fork (with a heat resistant handle) and place the peppers above the open flame, about 4 inches away. Continue rotating the pepper until all sides are charred and the skin of the pepper is slightly wrinkled. Then, place the peppers in a plastic bag and seal them in. If you have a small grilling basket, you can place it on the stovetop and rotate the peppers on the grill to produce the same effect.

If you have an electric stove, you can use the oven to smoke chili peppers. Place the peppers on a cookie sheet, leaving some space between them, and preheat the oven to about 450 degrees. It should take about 5 minutes for the peppers to roast; they should stay in the oven until the skins become a little blistery. Then, remove the peppers and place them in a plastic bag with a seal.

Whether you’ve roasted your peppers on the stovetop or in the oven, you’ll need to give the peppers some time to sweat in the bag; this shouldn’t take longer than about 15 minutes. Letting the peppers sweat for a little while will make them extremely easy to peel. Now it’s time for the gloves; remove the chiles from the bag, and rinse them under cool water. Then, peel the chile, discarding the seeds and veins along with the skin. You may want to save some of the chile skin to use for seasoning in another dish, such as meat for fajitas or salsa.

If you have any chiles leftover or are looking for new ways to eat your smoked peppers, you can pickle chili peppers to preserve them (these also make beautiful gift jars) or you can freeze the peppers and use them later. Chile oil or vinegar can also be created from your smoked peppers.

Also, it’s likely that peppers are not the only flavor you’ll be using to season your dishes with, and there are other foods you can smoke along with the peppers to make your dishes more savory. For instance, a stovetop grill works well for smoking chiles, but you can also smoke tomatoes, garlic, and other types of pepper on the grill as well.

This combination of smoked veggies is great for seasoning salsa, chile, or even rice dishes. For more recipe ideas for smoked chili, you can pick up recipe cards from your local grocery store or search online for a great way to prepare smoked chili peppers.

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