Tag Archives: grapes

Dehydrating fruit

7 Sep

Each week in Bountiful Baskets, I get a nice assortment of fruit.  It mostly gets eaten outright, but lately it’s been tough for us to get through it before it goes bad.  Or, it’s just something we don’t particularly like a lot.  This week and last week, I got pears and nectarines that have sat, and the plums I got last week were starting to not look great anymore.  While trying to decide what to do with the pears, my friend D got a new fruit dehydrator to make raisins with the grapes we got.  I decided to ask to borrow it to at least dehydrate my pears and I picked it up yesterday.  Since you need the base and at least 4 trays, I decided I would try doing the nectarines, plums, and a couple bananas, plus we ended up putting a Granny Smith apple in too.

For the pears and the apple, I got out our peeler/corer/slicer.  Seriously, one of the best inventions for prepping pears and apples.  My girls love helping me use it.

Next, the pears, apples, and nectarines all need to be pre-treated to prevent them from browning.  There are a variety of options to do this, but I chose soaking them in lemon juice.  D had dehydrated her pears and dipped them in lemon juice, but felt like the lemon taste stayed with them, so I diluted my lemon juice with water, 50/50 ratio.  I left it in there about 5 minutes.

The plums I cut in half and removed the pits, the bananas I cut into 3/8″ slices.

I arranged it all on the trays, stacked the trays, plugged it in, and flipped the switch.

I let it run overnight, approximately 10 hours and here is what I woke up to.

It’s a browner than I wanted it to be, but it’s still sweet and full of flavor.  I think I may have left it in the dehydrator too long, probably should have started it later in the evening.  Also, I wonder if some of it was not in the lemon juice long enough or if my diluting the lemon juice had some effect.  Still a good experiment and thanks to D for letting me borrow the dehydrator!

Making Raisins

4 Sep

In my Bountiful Baskets basket this week, I got table grapes.  Cute, little, sweet green grapes.  I decided that instead of just eating grapes I would try to make them into raisins.  I don’t have a food dehydrator, or the money to buy one.  It’s plenty sunny here, but I was concerned about bugs getting them if I left the grapes outside. Not to mention that it’s monsoon season here and rain sometimes comes from nowhere.  So, I researched if it could be done in the oven and it can!

Before

First, I washed all the grapes and removed them from the stems.  I laid wax paper (parchment paper would work too) on a baking sheet to prevent them from getting too stuck to the baking sheet.  I made a slit through one half of each grape to pierce the skin, then laid in a single layer on the baking sheet.. I set the oven to 180 degrees F, put the grapes in, set the timer for 1 hour so I could

After

check to see how they were coming along.  7 hours later, they finally looked more like raisins! I had the oven on long enough through the day, so turned it off and left them in the oven overnight.  They are great and taste so much fresher than raisins in the store!  However, I don’t think I will be making raisins again soon, it’s just too much time to have the oven on, so it will have to wait until I can get a dehydrator some day.

Please note that doing this in the oven may take longer than 7 hours, depending on the size of your grapes and on your oven.  From what I read, it can take as long as 12 hours for this process to happen.  The end result is worth it if you are willing to take the time!

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