Have you planted padrón peppers but don’t know when to harvest them? Do you have so many that you no longer know what to do with them? These questions are quite frequent among gardeners who grow this type of pepper. Knowing how to plant it is important, but so is knowing when to collect it and what to do with so much afterward. Obviously, we cannot feed ourselves solely on padrón peppers.
That is why we are going to explain in this article when it is time to collect the padrón peppers and how to keep them later so that they last much longer.
When to collect the padrón peppers?
Once the frosty season is over, which is usually around the end of May, you can start tilling the land and choose a sunny area in the garden to plant the famous padrón peppers. The plants of these vegetables can reach a meter in height. In order to prevent them from fracturing, it is advisable to put individual stakes and fix them with twine. It is essential to water the padrón peppers with some frequency, but without drowning them. The good thing about this crop is that they do not usually suffer from pests or diseases.
The padrón peppers harvest can start in mid-July until September or October, when the frosts begin again. These vegetables are usually harvested while they are still immature. But how do we distinguish them? Before they mature and acquire their red color, padrón peppers are bright green, triangular and with a slightly rough conical shape. In addition, they are usually marked by three lobes at the apex.
How to collect the peppers from the plant?
Approximately eighty days after planting the padrón peppers, they can be harvested. Every four days we must collect all those peppers that are between three and five centimeters in length. This task requires a lot of attention, since they blend very well with the leaves of the plants. In addition, it is advisable to collect the padrón peppers with scissors or a knife, being careful not to break the stems or flowers.
How to preserve padrón peppers?
The most common way to make padrón peppers is by frying them in olive oil. To avoid breaking the cuticle, we must do it over low heat. Once they are fried, we add salt and that’s it. However, if we are planting the padrón peppers ourselves, we may not be able to cope with that much. In this case, what we can do is keep the padrón peppers. For this we have different options that we are going to comment on below.
The first option we have to preserve the padrón peppers is to fry them. Like other peppers, such as bell peppers, padrón peppers last a long time fresh in the fridge. However, fried we can extend their storage even more. For this we must wash them well before passing them through the pan. It is not necessary to remove the seeds or the stem. When the oil, preferably extra virgin olive oil, is hot, add the peppers and set the heat at medium height to prevent them from burning. Then we have to stir them a little in the pan until they have deflated and take on a fried texture. Then we take them out and let them cool before storing them in an airtight container.
Varieties of peppers
The day we want to consume them, it is as simple as reheating them in the pan and adding a pinch of salt. This time it is not necessary to add oil to the pan.
Another option we have to preserve padrón peppers is in vinegar. This is a very similar method to vacuum preserving, for example, roasted peppers. It’s important to put attention on We must use white wine vinegar without aromas and with good acidity. We are going to discuss how to do them step by step:
- Clean the peppers well.
- Bring water, 500 milliliters of vinegar, two tablespoons of sugar, a pinch of salt and a splash of oil to boil in a pot. As this mixture is the one that will preserve the peppers, we must add a touch of flavor to our liking.
- Once it starts to boil, you have to lower the heat and add the peppers. Leave them for about ten minutes over medium heat.
- The peppers should not be cooked completely, just be blanched. When they are ready, put them in a jar with the excess liquid and a small piece of garlic, until they reach the top
- We close the pot and place it upside down. Leave in this position for several hours.
As these padrón peppers will only be blanched, at the time of consuming them we will need to cook them again. In addition, they are delicious if we fry them a little in the pan before eating them.
Finally, we can talk about the freezing of the padrón peppers. While it is true that it is more advisable to consume fresh vegetables, having julienned frozen peppers does not hurt. In this way we will facilitate their use when we need them to cook, without worrying about whether they have been in the fridge for a long time or not. Again we will comment on this process step by step:
- Wash the peppers well, also removing the seeds they contain. Opening them will be easier for us.
- Let them dry and remove the water naturally.
- Cut them into small pieces or julienne, according to our preference.
- Divide the pieces into different freezer bags or tuppers. Bags are usually more recommended because they adapt better to the available space.
With these simple steps we already have the padrón peppers ready in the freezer. When using them for cooking, we just have to shake the bag well to break the block of ice. Then we take a handful of chunks of peppers and We add them directly to the pan. We can also wait for them to thaw at room temperature.