How to Re Hydrate Chile Peppers

We recommend using plastic gloves when handling dried chiles. Use whole chiles only, uniform in color and evenly dried. Throw away any that are broken, split, discolored or have light spots. Remove the stem by cutting the top off of each chile. Then, cut down the side of the chile to split it open. Use your fingers or a spoon to scrape out any or dried veins. Discard the seeds, veins and stem. Place the chiles on a medium/hot griddle or pan and roast them for 3-4 minutes. Turn often to prevent burning. Burnt chiles will need to be discarded as they will add the burnt flavor to any cooking. After roasting the chiles, place them in a bowl and cover them with hot water. Soak 20-30 minutes depending on thickness, using a spoon to push under the water. You make save the soaking water, which should resemble diluted coffee, only if the flavor is not bitter. You may use the soaking water in place of any water in any recipe using peppers (of course), soups, stews, etc. Now that the peppers have been rehydrated, you can chop them up and add them as desired. Or, you may use a blender to puree into a paste. Please note a food processor may not process it as smooth. Add some liquid (water, soaking liquid, etc) to the chiles to blend them properly. Blend or puree the chiles and liquid into a paste and use as needed.
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