Friday, August 19, 2011


Earlier this year my very gracious mother in law loaned us her dehydrator. We were interested in making healthy, cheap backpacking foods and snacks. I have dehydrated a few different fruits and experimented in the past. Being an older model, it doesn't have an adjustable thermostat so I'm not sure what temperature it is at. Makes drying times difficult to figure out for someone not familiar with it.
I haven't used it in a while. Decided to pull it out and give Apple Chips and try. 
 I cored, sliced, and dipped in lemon water.
 And filled 5 of the 6 trays I had. Using 6 large apples!
I sprinkled 2 of the 5 trays with cinnamon. Decided to only use cinnamon on part of them in case I we preferred plain over cinnamon, and also to have options!
I did a little research to find out about how long apple chips should dry. I discovered 8-10 hours at 130 degrees was recommended. But, like I said, I have no clue what the temperature on this dehydrator is. So, I did like the manual to the dehydrator said, check after 4 hours. Were still very soft. I checked again at about 6-7 hours. The small ones were dry, the larger ones were still squishy in the middle. So I went and took a bubble bath! When that was finished it had been just shy of 9 hours.
Which was PERFECT!!!  They weren't chewy (like some prefer from my research), nor were they crisp and crunchy, (like others prefer). I wasn't sure which I preferred, so I'm really pleased they came out just right, dry enough to not be chewy, yet, not so dry they were crispy! I love the texture!

I plan to save these for our upcoming road trip to Okanogan, WA in about a week. My man is taking a LAV carbine course. Will be a long 13+ hour drive so, something to munch on in the car will be nice. Much better than stopping at conveniences stores on the way and paying wayy too much for junk food.
I am very excited about this upcoming trip, BTW!! :)

These are soo delish! I'm really pleased and encouraged that they turned out so well. Will be doing it again in the future. Apples should be coming into season here very soon. Hopefully will have an opportunity to stock up and preserve lots this way!

As I was looking through the dehydrator manual, I came across fruit leather instructions and recipes!
I remember my mother in law saying they tried the Crunchy Cantaloupe leather. Since I had a fresh cantaloupe I hadn't used yet and had all the other ingredients. I decided to give it a try since the dehydrator was already out!

apple sauce
flaked coconut
slivered almonds

Very strange combination of flavors, to me. But I had everything available, and figured I could at least experiment. I only made a small batch.
Pureed fruit with nuts spread on trays (lined with plastic wrap).

Crunchy Cantaloupe Fruit Leather!! Was a success! Tastes very good too!

So that's what I've done this week with the dehydrator. Plan to use it a lot more.

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