preservation Oven for dehydrating

The last few years I've been air drying my peppers but I would like to speed up the process a little. I checked out a food dehydrator but all my cupboards are full of these small specialty appliances so I don't really have the space to store one. Now has anybody used their oven for drying? I was thinking of spreading them out on a cookie sheet and setting the temp for about 140-150 F. Would this work the same as dehydrator?
 
i would not go above 125 for drying. above that and your basically cooking the peppers.

My advice is to ditch those specialty appliances and get a cheap Nesco dehydrator. You'll be surprised how often you can use it. Need dill for tonight's dinner? can't buy just a few sprigs? buy the whole $2 bunch, use what you need, and dry the rest for next time. I dry stuff all week long.
 
Get a dehy--your life will be so much happier.I`ve got 150 + habs going right now.Air content sucks but oh well.
 
Hi Diabolus,

I have a dehydrator which works really well, though it takes about 16 hours and requires regular shifting of trays. It is labour intensive but I can dry several pounds at one time.

I have also used my oven to dehydrate peppers. It is faster because I have a convection setting which keeps the air moving around the peppers, which are spread out on cookie sheets, just like you suggested. I have used the lowest setting which is 180 degrees and it takes around 3 hours. I shift the peppers around and remove them as they dry because of the risk of burning them.

I find that using the oven results in a deeper, smoky flavour to the final product which is fine, since that is quite a pleasant side effect. Using the dehydrator doesn't impart any additional flavours to the dry spice. It is a pure pepper taste. In particular, very nice when drying Habaneros, just as Hixs is doing. Not, of course, the same as fresh...which is in a category all it's own, but a very good substitute.

Go ahead and try the oven. It works great!! I'll say that it doesn't even cause the family to cough and complain. That happens after I start grinding the peppers using my "magic bullet" -- Best to let the dust settle for a few minutes before opening. Does everyone have a magic bullet? I don't know. I used to use a coffee grinder but it doesn't give the same fine result. It's a bit coarser. I've also been experimenting with adding spices to achieve different results -- garlic, cumin, etc.

Once you start doing this you will always want to make your own. Store bought chili powder just won't do it for you.

Hope this helps.
 
I use the oven for my jerky. I assume the principle would be the same...
Follow advice on "how to" in the dehydrator, but make sure to prop the oven door open with a tea-towel, ball of foil, what ever. If it's fan forced, more's the better.

Remember, you're drying, not cooking, so keep the temp. low.

RS
 
Yeah, I've heard that abouve 140F ya basically cook off the capsaicin, and kill seeds if you'd wanted to save.

Best dried I ever had are the ones from Hippy...they are amazing. I think his are dried at liek 90F or less. Taste good, and the seeds are viable bigtime. :)

It's not like drying peaches...
 
I tried some scotch bonnetts and some dorset from the tree hugger, bloody awesome, the rush takes you away!!
 
QuadShotz said:
Yeah, I've heard that abouve 140F ya basically cook off the capsaicin, and kill seeds if you'd wanted to save.

Best dried I ever had are the ones from Hippy...they are amazing. I think his are dried at liek 90F or less. Taste good, and the seeds are viable bigtime. :)

It's not like drying peaches...

Hi Again,

I've used my oven on quite a few occasions to dry my peppers. 180 degrees is the lowest setting I can use. It works much faster than a dehydrator so it really requires hands-on attention. I've enjoyed the result and haven't noticed a diminishment in the heat level. Maybe if you left them in too long the capsaicin would "cook off" but I haven't had that experience. In any case, I'd always recommend that someone try it, at least once, to see if they like the result.

Experimenting is always fun, in my opinion. I'm sure you agree, Quadshotz!
 
QuadShotz said:
Yeah, I've heard that abouve 140F ya basically cook off the capsaicin

I have to disagree with that. I've made hot sauce numerous times. One recipe I use involves simmering all the ingredients in a pot. Since its simmering then we know the temp is 212 F. and I can guarantee you that the capsaicin is unharmed :hell:
 
fineexampl said:
My advice is to ditch those specialty appliances and get a cheap Nesco dehydrator.

DITTO! get rid of that can opener or waffle maker. & get yourself a dehydrator. depending on your location if in the states I'd get a nesco.

PrairieChilihead said:
I have a dehydrator which works really well, though it takes about 16 hours and requires regular shifting of trays. It is labour intensive but I can dry several pounds at one time. .

labor intensive, the worst part is just cutting the pods in half other than that you really dont need to watch'em (cuz you cant burn'em & dried is dry) or rotate trays (but it helps get'em all dried faster at the same time)


PrairieChilihead said:
I start grinding the peppers using my "magic bullet" Does everyone have a magic bullet? I don't know. I used to use a coffee grinder but it doesn't give the same fine result. It's a bit coarser.


I use a mr.coffee grinder & dont have a problem with it, it grinds the pods up to fine powder (has 3 settings & if not fine enough grind again) & I'd have to say nothing bigger than a grain of salt, at most (otherwise its powder unless I dont grind much past 15-30 seconds)


Skyjerk said:
I have to disagree with that. I've made hot sauce numerous times. One recipe I use involves simmering all the ingredients in a pot. Since its simmering then we know the temp is 212 F. and I can guarantee you that the capsaicin is unharmed :hell:

I agree 100%, when I make hot sauce I always bring close to a boil & then let simmer for couple minutes. & the cap is still there trust me ;)
 
Don't do it. my sun-dried chiles are WAY hotter and flavorful than the ones I had dried in a toaster oven or plain ol' oven. the dehydrator ones are not as good, but better than the oven ones.
 
omri - you gotta remember theres only certain places that you can dry chiles outside w/o problems & in a timely manner. & just a guess I'd say at least 1/2 of the people or more on this form do not live in one of those locations.
 
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