Some things are easier to buy at the store than make from scratch, sliced bread comes to mind. Chili powder however does not fall into this category. The reward for grinding your own is well worth the minimal effort.
Store bought chili powder product has a tendency to become bitter when cooked and is relatively overpriced at the local markets. Follow this simple recipe and you’ll be rewarded with a flavorful batch of custom chili powder that is easily stored in the pantry.
Chiles –Dried. Total 24 chiles
Pasilla x 4
Cascabel x 4
Guajillo x 4
Mulato x 4
Arbol x 4
New Mexico Red x 4
*You don’t need to purchase or use the exact chiles listed. In fact, the beauty of making a custom mix is tailoring the blend meet your tastes or use what ingredients are on hand. Remember, a recipe is just a guideline. The chili powder won’t suddenly become gunpowder if you mix and match chiles. Since each pepper has a distinct character using a chile chart can help in deciding which peppers to purchase and blend. I’ve provided a basic chart here.
Cumin ground 2 TBL or 13 grams
Garlic Powder 4 TBL or 32 grams
Paprika 2 TSP or 6 grams
Oregano 2 TBL or 4 grams
1. @350 degrees, toast chiles in the oven on a sheet tray/cookie sheet.
2. Turning frequently the chiles will become very aromatic. The outside skins will become soft and glossy as the oils are heated and released. The chiles are done when this occurs. Remove peppers from the oven and place in a bowl. They need to be removed from the hot tray to prevent burning!
3. More toasting is not better. The chiles are quite delicate and will burn quickly. Burnt chiles are a strong flavor and will over power the mixture in a bad way.
4. Remove stems and deseed the toasted chiles. I start by pulling out the stem and then tearing the pepper open. It is important to remove all the seeds.
5. Once deseeded and stemmed, tear the chile flesh into pieces and place into the blender. If you don’t tear the peppers into smaller pieces the mixture can become gummy and take longer to dust in the blender.
6. Start with a low blender setting and begin to break up the peppers. Be patient. If you start with too high of a setting it will toss the pieces all around and not break them up.
7. As the peppers begin to grind down you can increase the speed of the blender. Be sure to stop the blender and occasionally stir the ground chili mixture gathering at the bottom. Continue to blend until a coarse powder is created.
8. Add the spices to the ground chile mixture in the blender.
9. Blend together the spices and ground chile until a fine powder texture is achieved.
Using a funnel place your chile powder into a glass storage container and seal with a lid. A plastic container is acceptable it just doesn’t show off your sexy creation.