I have been thinking about getting a dehydrator for a while. After doing quite a bit of reading, I had discovered that the top of the line is about $500, which is not an option at this point. There is quite a variety of affordable models but I couldn't quite decide which would suit us more. My bestie pointed out to me that a local bulk foods shop hires one out. This is a much better option. I am also worried that the novelty might wear off so we will see how a week or so of this will go.
After looking through the kitchen I found some stone fruit and some cherry and grape tomatoes. This would be a great way to start. I even found some strawberries in the back of the freezer. After buying some dried strawberries on Thursday and having them all eaten on the same day, strawberries would definitely be worth drying.
The machine comes with 4 trays and the manual suggests that you use all 4 for optimal drying.
Once I had turned the machine on, the aroma through the house was amazing. Every time I walked past, I made sure to deeply inhale. Every now and then I even had to try something from one of the trays. The things I will do for my family in the name of 'quality control'.
After about 10 hours I turned it off. I really should have kept if going, but as I have mentioned before, I am not super patient.
The tomatoes are incredibly sweet so I just slurped some local olive oil over them and broke up some of the lovely fresh basil a friend had given me earlier in the week. We are planning to make some pizza tonight so this will go perfectly.
So the first attempt at drying went well. Dried nectaries, peaches, figs and strawberries and no sulphites in sight.
I have some more strawberries thawing at the moment to have a go at some fruit leather.
I would really love to hear about other people's dehydrating experiences.