Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dehydrator...My Early Christmas Gift and Recipes

I can't tell you how excited I was when I opened up my first Christmas gift from my step-daughter and son-in-law!  Apparently they overheard me talking, listened to me or just picked up on a conversation I was having with my husband, on how I wanted a dehydrator for Christmas.  

I have always thought about how it would be if I could make my own jerky, dried fruits and snacks.  Now, I get the chance to experiment! But first, let me make one thing clear about me opening up a Christmas gift, even before Christmas Eve.  My son-in-law has to travel to Texas from Missouri every week to go to work.  He's home one week and then back off to work over the weekend.  He won't be home for Christmas, so we thought we would open our gifts while he was home.

Now, I've been reading up on how to use this baby; preparing my fruits, meats and veggies, temps on each one, time, etc.  But I've also found myself researching different recipes for the dehydrator as well.  The book comes with a few recipes, but not enough to satisfy my curious mind, and what all's out there.  Here are some recipes on what I plan to use my dehydrator for.

Kale Chips (there are so many recipes out there)
Banana Chips
Strawberry Chips
Fruit Leather
Beef and Chicken Jerky

Banana Chips:
Peel and slice bananas into 1/4 inch slices.  Place them in either orange juice or lemon juice until you get ready to place them in the dehydrator.  This will keep them from turning brown before you are ready to use them, but will not affect the flavor if you don't pre-treat them in the juice.  

Place the chips onto the plates in the dehydrator, but do not overcrowd or over lap the chips.  According to my brand of dehydrator (Waring Pro), cook on medium for 8 hours.  You may have to rotate trays 2x during the drying cycle if you have multiple trays lined with banana slices.

Strawberry Chips:
You will do the same here as the Banana slices but will cut into 1/2 inch slices and cook for 11 hours on medium.

Kale Chips:
First, wash and dry the Kale. Rip the ribs of the Kale from the leaves.  Place on dehydrator trays and cooks for 2 1/2 hours on medium.  No rotation is required.  Before placing on the trays, you can add a little flavor to the Kale by tossing the Kale with Olive oil and sea salt.  Or you can add cayenne pepper, garlic salt or nutritional yeast to give it some flavor.

Fruit Leather or Roll Ups:
1 8oz cup vanilla plain yogurt
2 TBS jam

Combine the yogurt and jam and spread the mixture into an even thin layer on the plastic roll up sheet that comes with the dehydrator.  Cover the trays with the lid and cook on hight for 5 hours or until yogurt is no longer gooey.  Peel leather from the sheet and tear in half.  The fruit leather or roll up can be rolled up in plastic wrap and stored at room temp.
makes 2 roll ups.

Okay....now, I'm interested in knowing what your favorite dehydrator recipes are.  Do you own or use a dehydrator?  Do you have any recipes you want to share?  If you, let me know and I will post them on this blog, giving credit to your name.