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Intro/this weekend's experiment

Hi! This is a rather small community! I hope people are still watching it.

I have a very under-used Excalibur dehydrator (I lusted after mom's and she bought me one for my birthday). I started a food plan under a dietitian last November, but have quickly learned that while I like veggies well enough (I'm an omnivore, thanks), I don't really eat anything but lettuce and carrots uncooked. So I thought, let's try drying.

Last weekend, I stuck some pre-sliced zucchini and yellow squash in the dryer. I brought them to work today to try them. The taste is strong (as is the case with most dried foods), and surprisingly I even thought it a little sweet! So I think I can get used to 'squash chips.'

Any suggestions for other veggies? I've done fruit before - banana, apple, strawberries and blueberries (disaster - I haven't gotten the hang of blanching evidently...). I haven't tried jerkies or leathers yet.

Fruit salad!

Last night I whacked a whole bunch of mixed fruit in the dehydrator. I had apples, oranges, kiwi fruit, and mango. I think that was it... I didn't do anything much to them, except dipped the apple slices in a lemon juice bath to stop them going brown. I wanted to see what each was like "naked", then next time I will experiment with sugar and seasonings, etc.

So this morning we woke up to a house redolent of dried fruit! The apple and mango turned out best. Dried mango is excellent and I don't think I'd do anything else to it, it's perfect as it is. I might throw some cinnamon sugar on the apples next time.

The kiwi fruit was ok - the flavour might be a bit strong for my liking, same for the orange. Bek liked the orange except for the peel but she agreed with me that the apple and mango were the best. She took a little baggie of dried fruit salad to school with her for lunch.

Now I can't wait for mango season so I can get a tray when they're on special. Yum!

Dried bananas

 I am in the process of drying a crapload of bananas today - it's Dad's birthday, and he's really hard to buy for. But I know that he once got some dried bananas and loved them, and couldn't get them anymore (not banana chips, these were practically whole little bananas and they were a bit leathery rather than crispy).

So that's what I'm doing!

I peeled each one, cut it in half, then cut each half lengthways (if they were little ones like ladyfingers, I'd probably just cut them lengthways). Then I put them in a bath of water with a little lemon juice, cinnamon and honey added, laid them out on the trays, cut side up, and sprinkled them with cinnamon sugar.

They've been going about 18 hours now and they're looking good. I turned them about 12 hours in. First taste-test proves to be quite promising!

I don't know how they'll keep but knowing Dad, they won't last long anyway.

I just hope he doesn't blow Mum away with too many bad banana fartings! Lol...


My first FAIL.

 I put a batch of peas on this morning (cause I love the crunchiness of wasabi peas, but I don't like the wasabi. I only discovered them because Bek got addicted to them via her dad)

And then I went out, and worried the whole time that the house was going to be on fire when I got home (it was all the warnings in the instruction book about never leaving your dehydrator unattended that did it)

Anyway, when I got home the house was thankfully intact, and at first glance, the peas had magically disappeared! Closer inspection revealed that they had fallen through the holes in the trays and were sitting in the bottom of the dehydrator, all wrinkled up! Totally unappetizing. 

I wonder how they dry the wasabi peas without getting them to shrivel up like that?

I have yet to find out about the chick peas I put on at the same time... they are a leetle bit shrively but I remain hopeful!


Edit: the chick peas turned out pretty good! A bit like little nuts, only a slightly grittier texture. I had coated them in seasonings and a little tahini (to make the seasonings stick) but that all flaked off during the drying process.

Hi, welcome :)

I just bought myself a new food dehydrator, and couldn't find any communities for recipes here on LJ so I thought I'd create one.

I mainly wanted one to make beef jerky, fruit crisps, and healthy snacks like wasabi peas and dried fruit without all of the sulphites you find in the store bought ones.

I'll post a couple of recipes soon -  until then, feel free to introduce yourself, make a post, share a recipe - whatever!