Spices and seasonings – chili powder

Who doesn’t like a good chili? But take a moment to think before you answer – I am talking about a good chili, one that leaves you wanting more, not one that leaves you feeling like something really bad just happened in your mouth or your stomach!

I tend to prefer foods on the spicier end of the Scoville scale, but plenty of people don’t like, or can’t eat, very spicy foods. This is why I make my own chili powder to be a wonderfully fragrant and tasty, but non-spicy, seasoning – those who like a zing can add hot sauce to the dish, while those who don’t like the burn can still enjoy a tasty meal.

My favourite base recipe for chili powder is Alton Brown’s, found at the Food Network page linked here. My take on the recipe follows:

  • 1.5 roasted, dehydrated red bell peppers*
  • 2 tablespoons whole cumin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Put the cumin into a small frying pan and heat gently until you just begin smelling the cumin toasting – about 4 to 5 minutes. Take off the heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Place all ingredients into a spice grinder or food processor and blend into a fine powder. Place in an airtight container in a cool dark place. Use within 6 months for optimal flavour and smell.

    * Why do I make this with roasted dried bell peppers? Because they are chili peppers bred to have no heat, they have a wonderful fragrance, and the roasting brings out the sweetness very nicely. Bingo, you now have some gorgeous chili powder – enjoy!


    3 responses to “Spices and seasonings – chili powder”

    1. I like this recipe especially adding the roasted dried bell peppers. Would love to try this!

    2. Alisa, the bell peppers really make a difference, especially if they have been roasted before dehydration. They add a wonderfully sweet undertone to the flavour while contributing no heat 🙂

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