Dehydrating

Viewing 15 posts - 196 through 210 (of 237 total)
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  • #56592
    Tinga
    Participant

    @JulieInOregon wrote:

    OK new prepper here! I just bought a Nesco round dehydrator. I have 4 bags of cranberries frozen in the freezer. I want to dry them. What should I do? Blanch them? Use some lemon? I have never dehydrated anything before. Help me please. I have looked at videos on youtube, but nothing about cranberries. Thanks, Julie

    Oh and how do you store the dryed veggies or fruit? Do you use a food sealer or can you actually use canning procedures?

    I’ve dehydrated blackberries, raspberries, blueberries and strawberries (plus a lotta others. like a whole jar of mixed fruit out of the can, you just have to rinse it)
    The blueberries I did turned out just fine, no blanching required. You might turn down the heat though, some of my berries I had to prick with a pin to get them to dry. The blackberries turned into one big MOOSHY mess.. yuck. Raspberries did fine, but Ive never tried cran

    #56593

    Tinga,
    Thanks for the reply. I finally found a video on youtube. It looks pretty easy. I’m going to put it in tonight. You just put the cranberries in a blender or food processor and break them up a little. Spread them out on the tray and bake for 12 hours. I will post when finished.

    #56594
    anita
    Participant

    I got an Excalibur 5 shelf drier (with the timer) last fall and love it! I only wish I had gotten the larger one. I didn’t think I’d use it as much as we do. Even my son will buy apples and dehydrate so he has them to add to cereal.

    I bought lots of apples in the fall, and they were eaten practically as fast as I dehydrated them.

    I’ve also done onions, shallots (I put the dehydrator outside when I do those two), green beans, carrots, bananas (those were about the least favorite of everything, although they would probably be good in banana bread), and peas, which were a real waste of time dehydrating them from the garden. I’ve heard that if you want to dehydrate peas, buy frozen ones from the grocery.

    I have a book on solar drying, and I believe it says not to use window screening, as those have zinc in them that might get into the food.

    I did just order a solar dryer that could probably be relatively easily made, but I doubt it would cost much less money in the end, assuming you didn’t have stuff to build it with lying around.

    http://www.amazon.com/Food-Pantry-Hanging-Dehydrator-Dryer/dp/B001T426TE/ref=sr_1_1?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1333240827&sr=1-1

    #56595
    Tinga
    Participant

    Pretty much any frozen veggie/ fruit can just be thrown in the dehydrator. Part of the freezing process is they blanch them. Only thing to watch out for is potatoes. SOME potatoes will have oil in them, and they will never ever EVER really dry out. Costco had 10lbs of hashbrowns and they were oil free. Took up the whole dehydrator and when I got done, I could fit all in a gallon sized zip-loc.

    For apples, instead of slicing rings, I cut them in half and use the slicer attachment on my food processor. A big water/lemon juice bath next and on the tray they go. AND my boys LOVED the yogurt roll-ups.

    #56596
    char
    Member

    I haven’t gotten started yet but I do have a few questions

    For those of you that dehydrate potatoes do you think it is cost and time effective to dehydrate vs purchase freeze dried? What if you grow your own and put them in sand and a trash can (sort of a do it yourself root cellar. How long do they last?

    What happens if you seal the dehydrated or freezedried items in a mylar bag and a 5 gal bucket and have to get a cup of it. How long does it last after opening? Can you reseal the bag? Do you need to seal smaller portions in the bag? What would be agood amount for a smaller portion? I saw a guy on youtube seal his bags with an iron and a balance so he would have two seals. What do you guys think?

    Thanks a lot!

    #56597
    Ronin4hire
    Member

    I use only frozen taters for dehydrating but I dont grow my own…
    My question is the “cost” of buying, blanching and preparation VS using bulk frozen on sale.
    I keep most of my dehydrated items in vac sealed mason jars.
    Some I have in SMALL mylar for longer term/mobile storage however.

    #56598
    Tinga
    Participant

    @char wrote:

    I haven’t gotten started yet but I do have a few questions

    For those of you that dehydrate potatoes do you think it is cost and time effective to dehydrate vs purchase freeze dried? What if you grow your own and put them in sand and a trash can (sort of a do it yourself root cellar. How long do they last?

    What happens if you seal the dehydrated or freezedried items in a mylar bag and a 5 gal bucket and have to get a cup of it. How long does it last after opening? Can you reseal the bag? Do you need to seal smaller portions in the bag? What would be agood amount for a smaller portion? I saw a guy on youtube seal his bags with an iron and a balance so he would have two seals. What do you guys think?

    Thanks a lot!

    Frozen vs Fresh is all about TIME. If you got the time and taters are cheap you CAN do it yourself. You just have to blanch them before you dehydrate. Otherwise, hit your local Costco and grab the uber big packs of hashbrowns ( check for oil first) For hasbrowns I’ll buy frozen, sliced I do myself.

    Ive opened my 1 gallon mylar of shredded hasbrowns, close to 6 months ago. They are still good. I keep it in the cupboard, rolled up with a chip clip. You CAN open the bag and reseal later ( I use a clothes iron and a 1×2 stick wrapped in tinfoil. You can use a dowel, but square doesn’t roll on ya) but eventually your O2 absorber will be kaput.

    I usually keep 2 separate food stocks. LONG term ( more than 1 year) and short term (less than 1 year)
    If I put something up in a bucket and mylar, I REALLY try to NOT open it. Keep a smaller amount out in smaller 1 or 2 gallon buckets or mason jars for cooking.

    #56599
    char
    Member

    K thanks. I guess no taters tots then. 🙁 Can I make mylar bags smaller for like snack size stuff? If I put it in a jar my vacuum kids would find them!!

    #56600
    Tinga
    Participant

    Sure you can make smaller bags. Grab a 5 gallon bag and make a bunch of little ones. I usually fold the mylar in half to get a crisp seam, unfold and line the crease up in the middle of my board ( i use a 1×2 normally to seal but I double up the seams where I split the bag) Run your iron over the top to seal and cut. Fold those 2 bags in half and seal. You know have 4 bags. You can go as small as you want.

    #56601
    Zonnebloems
    Participant

    Just started prepping and dehydrating and thought I would share this tip. For things like getting uniform strawberries use a boiled egg slicer. Under $5.00 and very quick.

    #56602
    Sasha
    Member

    Concerning taters . .. I got potato buds and sealed them with my FoodSaver. I plan to use them to make mashed and to thicked soups and stews. The only fruit I’ve done so far are bananas and apples. I plan to look around the store this morning to see what else I can add to the mix. The strawberries will be coming in here at a reasonable price so I’ll try that. Zonne, thanks for the tip on the egg slicer.

    #56603

    So i have chickens and from time to time end up pickling eggs at any rate they begin to pile up. i wanted another way to store them and found you can scramble them and then dehydrate them. leave as is or turn into a powder also you can use some parchment paper poor a thin layer of milk on it and dehydrate that as well. You know you see things like this from time to time ,but never think to do it yourself and then you do it and wonder why haven’t i just always done this for myself.

    #56604
    rjburk
    Member

    Wow, a lot of info….new to dehydrating…..what is the shelf life of veggies ? meats ? fruits ? and is the dryer the better for shelf life ? Thanks in advance…

    #56605
    Vina8
    Member

    We dehydrate a lot, mostly stuff from our garden. Like some others here, I store the dried food in canning jars with a desiccant packet and vacuum-sealed with my FoodSaver. rjburk, I recommend you dry fruits and vegetables until they are “crisp” and break, not bend. If you don’t dry them completely, there is a good chance it will mold. A lot of commercially “dried” food like fruit that you buy in the grocery store is pliable. Much of that has preservatives and/or a lot of sugar.

    As far as shelf life, as long as your food is protected from heat, moisture, light, and insects it should last a long time. I keep mine on shelves in my basement. I have dried food 3 years old that I use with no loss in flavor.

    When I first bought my dehydrator (Excalibur 9 tray) about 3 years ago, people on this forum were kind enough to refer me to some great You Tube videos by Dehydrate2store. This woman is the queen of dehydrating. She is a tad obsessive/compulsive about some things, but overall is very helpful. http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=Dehydrate2store#g/u Watching her videos gave me all the confidence I needed to jump in. Don’t be intimidated by it. Just experiment and see what works for you. It really is very easy and safe. We end up drying much more than we can. Good luck!

    #56606
    rjburk
    Member

    Thanks…..appreciate the info……..

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