Sep 19, 2012

Peppadry

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Now and then I’ll think I have a great idea. More often than not these ideas blow up in my face, but they’re fun little experiments. Having said that: this was definitely one of my brighter ideas.

Not sure if you’ve noticed my deep-seated love for peppadew peppers? They’re these little bright red South African jewels. Tiny flavor-bombs.

They’re spicy and sweet with a slight tang to them. I don’t use them for my postings all too often (I did in my bowl of happiness) because I know you can’t buy these beauties all over the world. Outside my blog I go crazy with these… heck, I even buy mustard that has peppadews in it.

 
Here’s said jar pickled peppadews.
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But then I had an idea. What if I rinse them to remove some of the brine.
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Dab them dry with a clean towel best as I could.
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And dehydrate them.
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I figured I’d add few other things while I was at it, like (unwaxed) lemon peel.
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The last of my seriously hot home-grown Anaheim’s. I prefer to dry them whole and grind them when I need to.
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And my favourite: Roma tomato slices lightly seasoned with a mix of garlic, onion, oregano, parsley, peperoncino, thyme and salt.
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It took quite some time to dry the peppadews in my machine. You’re talking 15 to 16 hours. But it was worth every single minute: they’re mind-blowing.
 

You end up with the most amazing, crunchy, glossy and flavourful dried peppers, tomatoes and lemon.
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I was in awe of them, really. Took quite a few shots.
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Everything tastes so perfect. I used my spice mill for the lemon and ended up with the best lemon powder, ever. I’ll be using it for tagines, seafood dishes, cheesecakes… you name it. But the best were the peppadews.
 

The flavour was more concentrated, sweeter, spicier and they looked like candied jewels. That’s how they taste as well.
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So crunchy you can pulverize them between two fingers. I’ll be drying a lot more of these in the times to come.