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Last time I roasted green chilies, which consisted of charring the skin, I had a tough time peeling them. Is there an easy way to peel roasted green chilies, or some secret I'm missing?

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@hobodave: People aren't taking the hint...I'm afraid your going to have to merge them –  dmckee Aug 13 '10 at 15:44
    
@dmckee Alas, there was no hint for me to take. I searched for "peel green chilies" and there were no results for peppers on the entire page of search results. Perhaps "peel" isn't even the right word, but hey, I never claimed I was a pro. –  indiv Aug 14 '10 at 5:00
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5 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

The standard advice is a paper bag, but I don't think it is optimal. I always put them in the smallest bowl that will hold them, and put a plate over the top of that. The idea is for the peppers to sit in their own steam for a few minutes while they cool down. The steam seems to loosen the skins.

Whatever you do, don't take the skins off under running water, which is a tip that you will see sometimes. It makes it easier, but washes away a ton of the flavor!

Consider wearing food-grade latex gloves while doing this procedure if the chiles are at all spicy. It will save you from burning hands later.

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Thanks for these great tips. I ran them under water last time, too, when I had trouble peeling them! I tried green chilies again tonight, and the roasted skins practically just fell off after letting them steam for a moment. –  indiv Aug 14 '10 at 4:49
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I pop them into a paper bag and close the top for a few minutes right out of the oven. Shake them a bit. It seems to help loosen the skin which will then peel off in large sheets. If it still sticks a lot, try roasting them longer next time.

You may still miss a few (mostly small) pieces, but that isn't a big deal.

Don't recall where I learned that.

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I like the shaking idea, I'll be sure to try that next time! –  stephennmcdonald Aug 13 '10 at 13:39
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I use a tupperware with a lid that seals. Have had bad luck with paper bags. I give them a solid 5-10 minutes, and then use a sharp paring knife if the skin is still sticking or just to make lifting the (now very slippery) pieces of skin easier.

I was warned a long time ago that I might have a problem using a sealed tupperware as opposed to a paper bag, as the hot steam can't escape - two different people told me that my tupperware might explode, or that it might contract so much that it pulls itself out of shape. Neither has happened yet, thankfully, and I've been roasting peppers regularly for years now.

If you fully, fully char them, it should make it much easier, so if there's any possibility you're not blackening them enough, give them another few minutes on the fire.

Agree with Michael about not doing it under water, it definitely makes it easier, but you lose so much flavor!

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I use the heavy plastic freezer bags (similar to @stephennmcdonald Tupperware method) making sure to seal the chilies in their own steam for a couple minutes. Wipe the charred skin off with a clean dish towel or paper towel.

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Are you charring them over an open flame, and at high heat? If not, doing that should help. Also make sure that they are roasted enough. You could always but a chilie roaster. If you've never seen these in action, they can do entire sacks of chilie at a time over a propane burner, inside a rotating drum that take a lot of the skin off. I really miss the smeel of roasting chilie in the fall.

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