woensdag 3 juni 2020

Storing peppers by freezing, drying & pickling

Westlandpeppers is regularly asked how to store the peppers for a long time and whether you can also freeze the peppers. There are several options, from freezing to drying or pickling the chillies in a jar. With the options, the peppers will last many, many months, but we always advise to not keep them for longer than 1 year. And for all options applies, the longer you keep the product, the lower the quality.

Freezing the peppers 

It is possible to freeze whole peppers. Wash the chillies and dry them well before you put them in the freezer. It is important to put the chillies in the freezer separately. So that they do not stick together and damage each other as soon as you take them out of the freezer. As soon as they are completely frozen you can store the chillies in an airtight freezer bag with a date sticker on it. If you need a chilli you can easily take it out. Rinse the pepper with lukewarm water. After this, the chillies can be used again as a fresh pepper. Keep in mind that they have a softer structure after freezing. During the freezing process, cells in the pepper crackle which gives the pepper a softer texture.

Freezing ground chillies

Another way is to grind the chillies first before storing them in the freezer. This can be done in a jar, but for example also in an ice lump form. Every time you need some chillies you take out one lump, wait for it to thaw and then it is ready for use.

Drying peppers 

A completely different way is drying the peppers. You can easily do this yourself! Make a small incision in each fresh pepper with a knife. This way the pepper loses its moisture faster and you prevent it from becoming mouldy. Then put the chillies on a dry and warm place so they can dry. When you don't have time to wait for your peppers to dry, you can also put them in the oven or microwave for a while. The dried chillies are best kept in a sealed jar or airtight container.

Pickling chillies 

Pickling peppers is used less often than freezing and drying, but is certainly not less good! If you are going to pickled peppers by vinegar, you have to leave them for at least three weeks before use!

You need the following ingredients:
- 1kg fresh peppers
- 250 ml of water
- 1 litre of vinegar
- 2 tbsp salt
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 litre of vinegar
- 2 laurel leaves
Pick one for flavoring options - Peppercorns / Garlic / Ginger / Cardamon / Dill seeds / Cinnamon sticks

Wash the peppers and remove the stalks. Cut the peppers into rings or pieces. Bring the water with vinegar, salt, sugar, bay leaves and spice of your choice to boil and leave to soak for 10 minutes. Put the sliced peppers in a weckpot / jar and pour over with the hot herb vinegar. Fill to the top, wipe the edges with a clean damp cloth and close the lid tightly. Place the jar upside down so that it is vacuum-tight and perfectly sealed. Wait for at least 3 weeks before use. Store in a cool and dark place. Once you open the jar we advise to eat within one month.

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