So, I had some crazy idea that I would start dehydrating fruit and herbs and whatever else I could think of, so I saved up my $$ and I bought one online for about $60. It's been fun to learn how to use it and try to get creative, but I haven't branched out too much, just stayed basic- here's what I've done so far:
Dried Apples.... A HUGE hit with my toddler!
I buy a big box of apples from Costco (when in season) or pick up a sack of them at a fruit stand or farmers market. Peel them, core them, and slice them. Place them on your tray and cook per dehydrators instructions. They are fabulous and the pectin in them really aid in digestion! If you or your little ones struggle with constipation, this is a great thing to keep on hand (as is FRESH apple & spinach juice made in a Juicer- I've made & recommended that many a times for family or friends after they have surgery, or are on antibiotics or have just had a baby- it's a great way to get things "going again!" Want more tips on the topic- email me I have lots of them up my sleeve!).
I also tried Kiwi & bananas- which were also a big hit! Sometimes I get a ton of one fruit (in this instance, kiwis) in my Abundant Harvest Organic Box for the week and we don't get to them all before they over-ripen, so we turn them into fruit snacks!I also tried blueberries and grapes, but in my opinion they weren't worth the time or cost to make them, it's easier to buy your own raisins, you need to have TONS of grapes to even make a dent in this project! I have also done strawberries and they are awesome!! Highly recommend those, as well as herbs like Bay Leaves, Marjoram, Basil, and Parsley (when I have left over herbs that I am not going to use, I pop them in the dehydrator so they don't go to waste!)
So what I am learning is what thickness we like, how long to dehydrate them, and which ones we like soft and others we prefer crunchy. It's my goal to do a few big batches at the end of a season to save some yummy fruit for us when they are no longer in season... we'll see if I get it done with all of the stone fruits at the end of this summer season! If you ever want to try this and have fruit to use, please feel to borrow mine if you want to take it for a "taste spin" before purchasing your own!
Next Update: How to make Homemade Fruit Roll-ups