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Just got a smoker. Peppers are popping off the vines, and I desperately want to smoke some. Need advice.


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#1 ProjectileTeeth

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 08:02 PM

Hey everyone, it's been a while since I've posted here. I think I'll post some pics of what I've grown this year, after I address this:

SO. I want to smoke some peppers and make hot sauce from them. I want to know what your preferred methods might be. I have a Weber Smokey Mountain 14". I just put it through a dry run to get a feel for it and to "season" it, as I've read whether correctly/incorrectly. I kept it at a steady 200F for about 4 hours. Tried to put it out with the hose after that, it seemed to go out, but when I tried to move the unit into the garage this morning, it was smoldering again, so I just left it in the driveway, hoping nothing bad would happen, closed all the vents and moved it out of sight (renting a duplex in city suburbs). So what's the best way to deal with smoldering coals?

Back to the peppers; I want to impart them with the smoky flavor, but not overcook them to the point that they're stiff and dry like dehydrated peppers. I do not plan to grind them into powder or anything; I have plenty of dried peppers from the local Mexican grocery store.

I want to know is it possible to maintain the juicy/fresh consistency while smoking peppers, or am I going to have to completely dehydrate them to get that sharp smoky taste? Could you please share tips?



#2 SmokenFire

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 08:20 PM

Hey PT!

 

With regards to the 14" wsm - if it's fully loaded with wood, it should burn on its own (under favorable non windy conditions) for 6-8 hours, depending on how the vents are used.  Once you've finished and you still have hot coals just close all the vents down and leave the smoker on concrete like a driveway or a patio (away from all combustible stuff like a responsible mofo). 

 

With regards to your pepper question - you can smoke roast peppers for 2 hours at 200 over whatever wood you like and then pull them and freeze em on a sheet pan, then put them into freezer bags once they're frozen through.  They are great in all manner of things, save that 'fresh juicy' portion of the question.  Once you cook or freeze peppers they don't crunch anymore. 

 

I like to take all types of anaheim and hatch type peppers and smoke roast them at 225 over pecan or apple wood for 2-3 hours depending on wall thickness, then cool & freeze as described above.  Then when I get the hankering I take em out and pop them into soups, stews, salsas, cornbread or biscuits, eggs, enchiladas, etc. 


It felt like satan pissed in my mouth it was so hot and lasted a long time. It was a horrible experience eating one of them. - SavinaRed
I would love to travel to your castle to roam the land,eat pie and hunt woman. - sicman
 
 

#3 Pivitol

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 08:53 PM

As far as seasoning a smoker I have always done it in a semi 2 part process. 1st step is a small (1 or 2 handfuls of charcoal) burn in for a couple hours and let it get hot this burns off any manufacturing oils or impurities. Then i let it cool for a few hours but the metal is still warm to hottish' i put a cooking oil on the interior of the smoker (i.e. Pam cooking spray) all over everything side walls, celing, grates and used a small amount of charcoal and dial it in for a mid to low heat 275 to 225, this will condition the raw metal inside your smoker (kinda like conditioning a cast iron skillet). But that is just how I do it. One thing that concerns me is that I assume you sprayed the hot coals inside the smoker, this would produce quite a bit of steam of which is now exposed to raw unprotected metal and you could see rust very soon on the interior of your smoker. If you do notice rust use a green scotch brite pad in soapy water scrub the interior and start some charcoal and let it go for about 20min to help it dry out then coat the interior with oil and let it go.
 



#4 The Hot Pepper

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 09:32 PM

You don't ever need water, just let it burn out.

 

I would smoke the peppers until they dehydrated. This will preserve them for storage, think of the dried chiptoles you find in the bags in the store. Okay, now think of the ones you find that are soft in the cans with adobo sauce. They were dried first, and rehydrated. So to plump them back up you can put them in water in your fridge, or in a sauce like adobo. ;)

 

It takes a long time to smoke-dry chipotle style. You can combo smoker/dehydrator. Or you may want to do what SmokenFire said too.



#5 ProjectileTeeth

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 05:04 PM

Thanks for the advice, guys. About to smoke a full tray of orange habs right now. I have another question, though. If I didnt burn through all of the coals and wood I used the first time on my dry run, should I reuse them?

Edited by ProjectileTeeth, 05 September 2019 - 05:04 PM.


#6 The Hot Pepper

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 05:12 PM

sure



#7 ProjectileTeeth

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 07:03 PM

Hey PT!

 

With regards to the 14" wsm - if it's fully loaded with wood, it should burn on its own (under favorable non windy conditions) for 6-8 hours, depending on how the vents are used.  Once you've finished and you still have hot coals just close all the vents down and leave the smoker on concrete like a driveway or a patio (away from all combustible stuff like a responsible mofo). 

 

As a fireman's son, it's hard for me to do this without being really worried, but you all seem to agree on this tactic, so I'll do it. I'll probably get up at 3am and rush to the window to check on it, though...



#8 ProjectileTeeth

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 09:56 PM

Before and after.
After I pulled them out of the smoke (roughly 3.5-4 hours at 200F)
They smell delicious.

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#9 Mr.joe

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 12:04 PM

Your peppers look good. I've never smoked peppers, but plan to give it a try once I finish building my smoker.
I agree with the others, use the hose to wash your car not the coals. With some practice you can get a handle on how many coals you need for different length burn times. A smoker should be sealed well enough to snuff out the fire when you close all the vents. You gotta expect that thing to be hot for hours, I personally would keep it outside until completely cool.




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