My idea for this stemed from my cayenne pepper strings. I harvest the cayenne peppers, run a thread through them, and hang them to dry. From this I am able to use the whole dried pepper when cooking or can grind them up in a spice grinder (or coffee grinder though be certain not to use it for grinding coffee anymore unless you like really spicy coffee in the morning) for freshly ground cayenne pepper. I have never heard of this same sort of use in banana peppers.
Using my dehydrator (mainly because I could not wait for the peppers to dry out on their own time) I dehydrated whole split banana peppers on low heat for roughly 24 hours. In the end they dried out quite nicely retaining most of their natural color. From there I simply ground them up in the spice grinder until they became a powder. The end result was interesting. I am not going to say great just yet because I have not cooked with the powder. My initial thoughts for using this new “ground pepper” is with fish. Something like flounder, lightly seasoned with salt and the banana pepper powder and pan seared. Scallops and shrimp also came to mind.
The powder does have the taste of banana peppers though it is very mild. I purposely left the seeds in this time to retain some of the mild heat that the peppers naturally have, though I did not taste this very much. Cooking with it will be the only way to tell if this is a culinary path worth pursuing.
— matt bolus