Day 128

June 25, 2024

Thoughts: Earth Diet reader Nick Dale suggested I do some research on food dehydration!!! Wooo wooo ūüôā
Dehydration of food is one of the oldest methods of preserving food for later use. It can either be an alternative to canning and freezing or a compliment to these methods. With modern food dehydrators, drying food is simple, safe and easy to learn. Dried food is great in traditional cooking recipes and can save you a lot of time in the kitchen during meal preparation time. Dried¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† foods are also ideal for camping and backpacking as they take up little weight or space and do not require refrigeration. Kids really love fruit leathers too, which make a healthy nutritious snack food. It sounds like a good idea for somewhere like where I am now, in Florence, Alabama USA (filming The Man In The Maze). It is cold weather so there aren’t as many fruits and vegetables in season and the supermarkets are importing fruits and vegetables. So if they dried fruits in the summer, they could still eat them in the winter.
Drying is a method of food preservation that works by removing water from the food, which inhibits the growth of microorganisms and hinders quality decay. Drying food using sun and wind to prevent spoilage has been practised since ancient times. Water is usually removed by evaporation (air drying, sun drying, smoking or wind drying) but, in the case of freeze-drying, food is first frozen and then the water is removed by sublimation. Bacteria yeasts and moulds need the water in the food to grow. Drying effectively prevents them from surviving in the food. There is, however, a loss of vitamin A and C in dried foods due to heat and air. It usually takes vegetables 6-16 hours to dry, and fruit 12-48 hours. One can dry fruit and vegetables, and make jerky and fruit leather.
You can dry: (for a full list visit the link below)-seeds-herbs-fruits (you can make banana chips)-meats (jerky)-seeds-popcorn -vegetables
How do I dry?-Choose Which Drying Method is Right For YouSun Drying This is rather difficult because you need three to four sunny days of at least 100 degrees in a row.
Oven Drying Oven drying is an acceptable method of drying food, but it isn’t very energy efficient, and foods aren’t very flavorful in the end. If your oven cannot obtain temperatures below 200 degrees farenheit, use another method for food dehydration. You will need to prop open the oven door to maintain air circulation during the drying process.
Electric Dehydrating This is the best method of dehydrating food. An electric dehydrator is energy efficient and can be operated at low temperatures needed to maintain nutritive values in the food. Your electric food dehydrator should have some sort of heat control and a fan to maintain air circulation during the drying process.
What are other uses of a food dehydrator? Besides being used during peak season to preserve food, a food dehydrator can be used for proofing breads, making yogurt or cheese, drying seeds, curing nuts, de-crystallizing honey and drying crafts.

For a whole list of fruits and vegetables that you can dry and how to do it for each individual item go to