We cook with a lot of powder. No! Not that kind of powder! Powders like these:
- Mushroom powder
- Onion powder
- Beet powder
- Tomato Powder
‘Powder’ is made by dehydrating vegetables then blending them into a powder. I generally leave them in larger chunks and blend them a bit at a time as this will preserve their flavor better (smaller flakes have more surface area and more contact with air and will degrade faster). The biggest disadvantage is that larger flakes take more room to store.
When it comes to substituting powdered vegetables in the place of fresh ingredients it’s important to note that the size of the flakes can make a massive difference. When in doubt, start with a little bit and add more as you go.
My general rule is this:
1 tablespoon of powdered vegetable = 1 cup of the fresh ingredient
A tablespoon of chile flakes – 1 cup of hot peppers. A tablespoon of celeriac = 1 cup of celery.
I start with half the amount that I plan to use, allow it to cook for a while, taste and adjust.
The reason for my math (other than trial and error) is pretty simple: vegetables often contain 90-95% water. If you multiple by 10, you get a very approximate idea of the volume of your powder if it was chopped whole. Pieces of jalapeno take far more room in a measuring cup than the same quantity powdered which accounts for such a small amount delivering so much flavor.