I'm a long time canner but I must admit.... dehydrating food does have some advantages.
Dehydrated food in small containers has it all over home canned food as far as space saving. In addition, dehydrating fruit makes quick easy snacks to take along on outings. Throw them in a zip lock baggie and you are good to go.
Pre-treatment recipe - 1 cup lemon or lime juice to 1 quart water. Slice fruits like apples or pears directly into a pretreatment. Let soak for 5 minutes, drain and lay out on trays.
Fruits like peaches and apricots can be cut in half, pitted, then "turned inside out". Press the skin sides in so that the fruit side presses out and the pulp is more exposed to the air flow.
Approximate times for dehydrating food in a dehydrator. Actual Drying time will vary according to the size of pieces, temperatures and even humidity. You'll notice that these are very general guidelines.
|Type of Food||How to Prepare||Approximate Drying Time||Notes|
|How to dry Apples||Slice apples 1/4 inch. Pre-treat. Peeling is optional.||6 - 10 hours at 135 degrees||Apples can be sprinkled with cinnamon sugar for a fun snack.|
|Drying Apricots||Cut in half, pit and press inside out.||6-12 hours at 135 degrees.||Apricots should be ripe and somewhat soft. Not green.|
|Drying Strawberries||Wash remove cores. Slice 1/4 inch, lay out on trays.||4-6 hours at 135 degrees.||Strawberries are probably the easiest and quickest fruit to dry.|
|How to Dry Cherries||Cut in half, pit, and lay out on trays||Dry at 165 for 2-3 hours, then at 135 until leathery. Texture will resemble a raisin.||Cherries take a very long time to dry, I'm not convinced it is economical to do it, but they sure are tasty!|
|How to Dry Peaches and Pears||Pears should be ripe but not soft. Peel, core or pit, and slice into quarters or 6ths. Treat to prevent browning.||6-12 hours at 135 degrees.||Pears are my favorite dehydrated fruit.|
How to use dehydrated foods.
I have attempted to share safe preserving methods. However, I make no promises. You alone are responsible for your health. Be aware of current safety recommendations.
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