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Suggestions on Dehydrating Fruits and Vegetables

Discussion in 'The Harvest: Recipes, Canning, Preserving' started by retiredwith4acres, Jul 11, 2012.

  1. Jul 14, 2012
    schmije

    schmije Garden Ornament

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    I think I have the same dehydrator as you do, and I love it! Our favorite dehydrated fruit is peaches - they're like candy. Strawberries (chunks or leathers) are a close second, and apples are always a hit.

    I'm going to have to try that zucchini candy. I'm swamped with them right now.
     
  2. Jul 14, 2012
    BackerBunch

    BackerBunch Chillin' In The Garden

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    Thanks for the zucchini candy recipes, you guys! I can't wait to try different flavors.

    I think DH thought I was making a mistake when I tried dehydrating my first batch of cherry tomatoes because I placed them cut side down without thinking they might stick. I got lucky because they didn't. I put them in the dehydrator yesterday afternoon and checked on them this morning. They were crispy, light and tender. We couldn't believe the burst of flavor!

    We drink a lot of coffee around here so I've started using the dehydrator with the jelly roll part to dry out our used coffee grounds. When I get a quart jar full, I walk around the yard "feeding" the plants I think need the extra nitrogen. I don't know if it's working but it makes me feel better re-using the grounds. The paper filters go into our compost bin.
     
  3. Jul 14, 2012
    so lucky

    so lucky Garden Master

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    I'm jealous!! I want a dehydrator too but don't have the spare cash to spen on an Excaliber. What other cheaper brands are good, in your experience?
     
  4. Jul 14, 2012
    The Mama Chicken

    The Mama Chicken Attractive To Bees

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    I found a Mr. Coffee brand at a yard sale about 2 years ago. It's not fancy, but it works just fine (and it only cost me $2!) I've done tomatoes, onions, garlic, fruit leather and tons of herbs. Eventually I'll have Hubby build me a big one, but the little one does what I need it to for now.
     
  5. Jul 14, 2012
    Jared77

    Jared77 Garden Addicted

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    My dehydrator is an Oster. I bought it at Walmart. No timer just an on/off switch. It takes a little getting used to, but with a little trial and error and a few rechecks on what I'm working on I've got it figured out. I didn't pay a lot for it but then I don't dehydrate that much stuff either. It works for what I want it for. I had a hard time too justifying spending the extra money on something that I don't use that much. I'm sure I could get A LOT more out of it, I just haven't put the effort into it yet. Too many other projects. Hope this helps
     
  6. Jul 14, 2012
    BackerBunch

    BackerBunch Chillin' In The Garden

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    We have an Aroma. If I remember correctly, I think you can get them at Walmart. Ours quit working not too long ago after having it several years. If DH hadn't fixed it (a wire came loose) I would have bought another one. It's round and has a little motor in it that turns the trays. The downside is the trays are too big to clean in the dishwasher but I can live with that. ;)

    With all of the recalls, you can also make dog treats if you can find meat cheap enough.
     
  7. Jul 14, 2012
    Kassaundra

    Kassaundra Garden Addicted

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    I think more then the brand is the type, forced air!!!!! I have two one american harvest forced air that I love, the other one is a round brown one can't remember b/c I never use it b/c it is not forced air and literally takes 3 times longer to dehydrate. (got both of mine at garage sales) and am really wanting another american harvest, I keep looking on ebay.
     
  8. Jul 18, 2012
    schmije

    schmije Garden Ornament

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    I just tried the recipe for zucchini candy, and it's AMAZING! I even had some overgrown patty-pan squash that I chopped up and tried. They taste basically the same as the zucchini. This is a great use for excess/overgrown squash!

    My work friends thought I was really weird when I told them I was making it. I bet they change their attitude when I take some for them to sample tomorrow. :D
     
  9. Jul 19, 2012
    hangin'witthepeeps

    hangin'witthepeeps Deeply Rooted

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    All my candy is gone, between the husband, kids and co-workers, that stuff goes fast. My Cherokee Purple tomatoes have succumbed to a blight and I plan on ripping them out this weekend and planting some zucchini. I personally can never have enough zucchini.

    I want to remind everyone to dry your herbs. I went out last night and my oregano was overtaking it's gigantic pot. So I clipped all the long sprigs. I gave the chives a hair cut and cut a bunch of parsley. I managed to get 2 sprigs of thyme. I went in a rinsed them off and placed them in the dehydrator. They were all ready this morning and I put them in jars. If you have an over abundance, it's time to stock up on the dried herbs!!!!!

    When sweet onions go on sale this fall, I will cut, then blanch them and dehydrate them (put the dehydrator on the porch-smells strong). Then when they are dry, grind them to make powder. I always dry a few cloves of garlic at the same time to make garlic powder.
     
  10. Jul 20, 2012
    plainolebill

    plainolebill Chillin' In The Garden

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    This is still pretty early in the season for us so there isn't much to preserve, etc. We've dehydrated some of our blueberries, oregano, basil. I harvested a lot of garlic last week - when it's cured I'm going to try drying some and making garlic powder. I'm also going to try drying some tomatoes when they start ripening.
     

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