I hadn't seen anyone else post how they make chipotle peppers, so I thought I'd show some pics of how I do it!
Jalapeno's were on sale for .99/lb (pretty good for around here) so I grabbed a little over 12lbs of em'.
First off, traditionally chipotle is usually a red jap, but they are always $3-$4/lb and there's no way this cheap skate is paying that much!
Also, I always make chipotle powder out of what I smoke, no adobo sauce etc, so look else where if that's what you want. I use the powder in place of cayenne pepper in any rubs or seasoning of dishes... it just has way more flavor!
The way I make the pep's is prolly a bit unorthodox too, but whatever.
Here we go!
6lbs cut and 6 more to go - I cut the stem off and then quarter the pepper.
I cut the pepper as close to the stem as possible so that the pith (the white stuff inside) has something to hang onto once I cut it into 1/4's.
The pith is where all the heat is stored, if you want a cooler powder, you can remove the pith and seeds, but you might as well use bell peppers if you're going to do that!
The seeds are a little bit bitter when ground up, but I really don't mind that for 2 reasons - 1) bitter is one of the 5 things your tongue can taste 2) I use such a small amount of the powder that the bitterness isn't really noticed... besides, the heavy smoke I'm about to hit it with will be waaay more bitter than the seeds!
No, I am not part smurf, this is the required hand protection for cutting up this many japs!
You can see that once I 1/4 the pep, the end has enough pith still attached so that it doesn't fall off, that will be important once they go on the smoker.
All 12+ lbs on the chargriller... Just toss em' on, we'll even out the layers as they start to wilt & shrink up.
Here's the firebox loaded up with 1 1/2 chimney's of stubbs, unlit. There are about 6 lit briq's at the bottom of the left side. Mesq chunks on the top and replentish as needed.
I use mesq for the peps so that they have a very strong smoke flavor, that way if I add a teaspoon to a pot of chili, I get a subtle smokey flavor.
Obviously there is a big fat hot spot right below the upper vent. I re-adjusted the tuning plates below the grate so that hopefully we'll have a bit more even heat. Not a big deal since we'll shuffle all the pep's around now to make sure they are all getting smoke and drying equally.
This pic was taken after 15 hrs. I didn't tend it that whole time, just checked it before bed @ 11pm. It was still slightly warm this morn when I moved peps and reloaded the fire box. Usually there would be more of the peps dried and dark at this point, but it's been raining so the humid air slows it down a bit.
Pic after reshuffling the peps. You can tell that they've really started to shrink up, not quite so crowded now...
Thanks for lookin!
I'll post more pics as they progress towards being powder!