Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Recycling Fruit

A few years ago, I canned a whole lot of peaches and apples.  Quarts and quarts of them...it was a little excessive.  I did eat lots of them, but I discovered some languishing in the pantry this summer.  The sad thing is, after three years, they were still fine but had lost their texture.  To my taste, it is all about texture.  If it becomes too slushy, or gooey, it grosses me out and I can't stomach it.

So what to do?  Well, there is always the option to feed it to the Ladies.  They would love it if I tossed fruit to them every day.  But to throw four quarts' worth into their ravenous beaks...well, it just seems wasteful to me.  After pondering my dilemma for a bit, I thought: fruit leather.


Nothing could be easier.  I drained some of the liquid out of the jars, and then puréed the fruit using my immersion stick blender.  Then, it was simply a matter of pouring the fruit onto the fruit leather inserts that came with my dehydrator (I made a couple extras by tracing the form onto parchment paper and cutting it out--it worked great!)

After about 12 hours at 135 degrees, here's what I wound up with:
Beautiful!  A couple trays were still tacky after an overnight drying, so they dried for a couple more hours in the morning.  I was able to peel off one tray (it smelled incredible, like concentrated peaches).  To wrap them, I simply ripped the sheet of leather in half, laid each half on a strip of waxed paper, and then rolled it up so that the leather didn't stick to itself.
A quick fold of the ends over to tighten the wrap, and they'll live happily in a mason jar until I need them for a quick snack.

I don't know why it has taken me so long to make fruit leather.  I love it, and the process is so easy!  I think I will be making much more of this in the future.

1 comment:

  1. You are so clever! Excellent idea.



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