Archives

EASY DEHYDRATING

I found a great set of  videos on YouTube. They are by dehydrate2store.  She has 31 videos. The two I really like are “Dehydrating Frozen Foods part 1 and part 2”.
Here are the links:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfQg0hzFihM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYp1F29uoQw&feature=relmfu

Part 1 is just over 5 minutes and part 2 is just over 6 minutes long.  In a nutshell the videos show how easy it is to dehydrate frozen foods since the frozen food has been prepped for you by the manufacturer. All you have to do is open a bag of frozen food, dump it out frozen on the dehydrator tray and turn it on for 12 – 18 hours. The temperature should be about 120 – 130 degrees for vegetables and 130 – 140 degrees for fruit. Be sure your dehydrator trays have small mesh so the dehydrated food won’t fall through the trays.

My favorite frozen vegetable to dehydrate is corn. It is sweet and delicious and packs some good calories which is not always so with other vegetables. You will need about 12 lbs of frozen corn to produce a #10 can of dehydrated corn. At $1.15 per lb (current price at my neighbor grocery store) plus $1 for the #10 can that makes the cost is $14 for a can of dehydrated corn.  12 pounds of frozen corn is 60 two-thirds cup, 130 calorie serving which is almost 3 times what a commercial can would provide for the same cost.

My favorite fruits to dehydrate are any type of berry. They can be dumped on the tray frozen without any additional processing. If you have priced commercially canned dehydrated fruit and berries you will know that you can save at least half by dehydrating your own.

One vegetable I dehydrate that is not frozen and requires some processing is tomatoes. I use tomatoes a lot in my cooking. Canned tomatoes are great and convenient but their shelf-life is only 1-2 years. Dehydrated tomatoes come mostly in powder or crystals which when rehydrated is tomato sauce. I like slices and dices so I dehydrate my own. I buy tomatoes on sale (currently only $.45 lb) and use a mandolin to produce  uniform thick 3/16″ slices. 12 – 18  hours at 120-130 degrees and they are ready to be vacuumed packed or sealed in a #10 can.

Dehydrate2store has 2 other series on dehydrating food. She does a good job so I don’t need to act like I’m reinventing the wheel here. Watch her videos and save some money.

 

Ed Rogers

Copyright “Keep It Simple” 2012.  All Rights Reserved.

Comments are closed.