How to make turmeric powder.
The “no boil”, “no oven” method.
How to make turmeric powder? There are different ways you can do it.
The method I have used here is the old-fashioned Thai way, where you do not boil the rhizomes first and do not use an oven to dry them, but let them dry in the sun.
I do not know what method is the best, but this one is the one I first was told about first and it has been used by Thais for centuries.
I can figure out why you want to use an oven to dry the powder when you make turmeric powder for commercial use, it saves a lot of time and you do not dependent on the sun, you can dry the turmeric rhizomes in all kind of weather.
When I asked about why some people say you have to boil the rhizomes before slicing and drying I was told it was to kill bacteria, other people, I asked said it did not matter as long you wash the rhizomes thoroughly first.
Those who argue for “no boiling” say boiling the rhizomes first, may help kill bacteria but it will also kill a lot of the good “stuff” in the turmeric.
I can not judge what method is best. So in order to answer “How to make turmeric powder?” I will try the different methods used in Thailand.
Prepare the fresh turmeric rhizomes.
Try to get the rhizomes as fresh as possible and preferably organic. The best are the ones you grow yourself. Click here and see how…
If you can not get turmeric rhizomes at you local fresh market, try a shop selling Asian products, most of those shops are selling them as turmeric is an important ingredient in many Asian dishes.
Wash the rhizomes thoroughly.
When rhizomes are not boiled first, it is very important that they are washed thoroughly so that they are completely free from soil and other dirt.
You may leave them in a bowl of water for a while to dissolve soil residues, it makes them easier to clean.
Place the rhizomes on a cutting board.
Find a suitable cutting board, be aware that the yellow color from the rhizomes can be very difficult to get rid of.
Cut the rhizomes into thin slices.
Cut the rhizomes into thin slices, try cutting a slice so the slices become long, rather than small and round. How you cut them does not matter for the quality of the finished turmeric powder, it is just easier to work with large pieces.
Lay the slices on a tray.
Lay the turmeric pieces in one single layer on a tray. Please note that the tray on which the pieces are placed may turn yellow.
Place the tray in the sun to dry the rhizomes.
It varies how long it will take to dry turmeric slices, it depends, of course, on how much sun and how hot it is. However, you should assume that it takes at least 3-5 days before the slices are ready for use.
Let the rhizomes dry until they are completely dry.
It’s easy to know when the slices are dry enough, that’s when they’re “crispy” and break easily when you try to bend them. They are not dry enough when they seem a little “rubbery” and only bend but do not break when you’re trying to bend them.
You can either use an old-fashioned mortar to grind the dried rhizomes or-
-using an old-fashioned mortar to grind the rhizomes is the real old school way to do it but it takes longer time…
– you can use an electric blender.
-but with an electric blender, the work is done quickly and effortlessly.
Pass the powder through a fine-mesh sieve, this will ensure an even finer powder.
Powder that does not pass fine-mesh sieve needs one more time in the grinder. Keep on with this process until all powder har passed through the sieve.
Store the powder in an airtight container at room temperature.
I’m not sure how long you can store the turmeric powder but in an airtight container at least a couple of months without problems.