I decided to preserve the hot chili peppers from my garden by drying them in the oven. I haven't had success with hanging them to dry, even though I really like the idea of hanging herbs and such in the kitchen. I read if they dry too slowly, molds can develop. So, I went with oven drying.
After rinsing the peppers, I cut them in half and placed them on a sheet of parchment paper. I didn't use a cookie sheet, just the paper right on the oven rack. I read different articles about temperature. My oven seemed really hot at 200, and still at 150, so I used the lowest setting - warm. I didn't have to turn the peppers or keep looking to see if they were burning, and I let them dry at least six hours. It made such a nice sweet aroma throughout the house. When Steve came home, he said it smelled like chocolate. How interesting!
The historic chocolate is said to have spices that we wouldn't associate with making chocolate, and one of those is chili pepper! At Christmas when my sister makes her famous fudge, she too uses chili pepper! You would never know it, and the flavor of her fudge is exceptional! I think she uses just a touch, but what a difference it makes compared to others that I've tasted.
I won't be throwing these dried peppers into a mix of fudge, but I will throw a couple in a pot of chili! I have found that it's the peppers that really add flavor to the pot. Next year, I'll plan to preserve enough to last until the next harvest!