If you do not cultivate bell peppers or any other types of pepper as a local farmer, you might want to consider buying in bulk during its harvest season.
As a good home manager, you should buy groceries and seasonal food materials during their bumper season for storage against the winter or drier months. And this calls for knowledge on how to preserve bell peppers for future use.
How to Preserve Bell Peppers
Depending on their variety, some peppers release more flavors and hotness when preserved the right way. So if you are eager to learn how to preserve bell peppers or any other type of peppers for future use, you might want to bookmark this page. Peppers are seasonal crops, and they are so essential in our foods and very important to our overall health. So let’s sit back to address some of the ways we can effectively preserve bell peppers for storage.
1. Freeze your bell peppers
Almost all vegetables love the freezer – including bell peppers. Storing your bell peppers in a cellophane bag inside a deep freezer will keep them preserved for up to one year without losing taste or flavor. Some women choose to blanch their peppers before freezing them, but this is not so necessary. But let’s examine the best process for freezing your bell peppers:
- Handpick ripe and tender bell peppers for preservation
- Wash them under running water to remove dirt and impurities
- You may choose to cut the bell peppers into slices if you want
- Scrape out the seeds and membrane inside the pepper using a spoon
- Transfer the cut or whole peppers inside a cellophane bag
- Make sure the let out the air inside the bag before transferring into a freezer
- Keep frozen for as long as you want
It must be noted that freezing is the easiest way to preserve and store bell peppers and other types of peppers. And in case you are dealing with hot pepper, be sure to wear gloves during the process. You must also wash your hands with soap and water thoroughly before touching your face or body after the preservation process.
3. Dry or dehydrate your bell peppers
Africans love to preserve peppers by blanching them before drying out in the sun. By blanching, you boil the hot peppers briefly in hot water before spreading them out to dry under the hot sun. The dried peppers are then packaged in bags and stored at normal room temperature. Although it is possible to dry peppers directly under the sun without blanching them first, it takes longer to dry perfectly this way.
When blanched, bell or hot peppers can get perfectly dry under the sun in 2-3 days. But when they are placed out to dry in their fresh state, it may take up to a week of constant sun-drying to get them perfectly dried.
However, people in developed countries often use dehydrators to dry their peppers. A dehydrator is an electric machine that removes all water and liquids from any object. After the peppers are fully desiccated, they can be packed in bags and stored in normal room temperature. They can also be packaged in jars and stored away in a safe place away from the reach of children.
4. Can your bell peppers
Do you know you can also can your peppers? The best way to can your peppers is to have them ground into powders or a paste before canning. If you grind them into powder and seal them up in a plastic bag or jar, your powder pepper can remain preserved for more than five years. If you choose to blend it into a paste before canning, it can also last for more than five years if the can is air-tight.
You will have noticed that most canned foods can last for several years – the same is true for canned peppers. The canning process may be industrial if you have the machine to do it, but if not, just use very airtight cans to can the powder or pepper paste with no air whatsoever in the can. You can store the canned peppers inside the freezer or fridge if it has been blended into a paste, but it can be stored at normal room temperature if it is in powder form.
5. Smoke your bell peppers
Another way to preserve your bell peppers for several months is by smoking. Smoking dries out the moisture in your peppers and leaves them dry and long-lasting under all conditions. Smoked peppers are very shriveled and dry, and they can be packed in jars and even open baskets for storage at normal room temperature. The traditional way to smoke peppers is over a smoking a wood-fired grill, but the hot flavors coming from the smoke can be something else.
6. Pickle your bell peppers
Some people have mastered the art of pickling peppers for preservation. To do this, it is recommended that you soak the peppers to be pickled in very strong lime water before they are canned in a vinegar brine. Some people also steep the peppers in a mixture of vinegar and water laced with a small amount of pint before storage in the fridge. This will prevent the peppers from getting mushy and it will preserve their natural flavors and crispiness for the time you will need it again.
7. Grind and boil your bell peppers
Another method of preserving your bell peppers is to grind them into a paste and then boil or cook. Once they are ground or blended fresh, you must boil it in a pot until it becomes thick and dark in color. You may choose to have it almost solid so that there is a very little amount of water left in it. You can then scoop into sizeable mason jars and lidded shut before storage in the freezer. You can bring it out from the freezer and scoop the quantity you need for your culinary use before returning again to the freezer.
So there you have it – how to preserve bell peppers – for future use. You can share your bell pepper preservation techniques or experiences with us in the comments section below.