Monday, June 22, 2009

Drying Strawberries

On Saturday we took advantage of the fact that it wasn't raining (for once!) and went back to Upinngil Farm to pick some more strawberries. This time my plan was to dry them. Back home, I washed and hulled them, then sliced them in half. The biggest ones I sliced in quarters. Then I lined them up on the trays of my dehydrator and dried them for 15 hours or so (I usually do this mostly overnight). It has not been ideal drying weather and if strawberry season was not so short I would have waited in hopes of a drier day, and run the dehydrator outside. That's what I'll do later in the summer with the tomatoes and peaches.

The strawberries came out great, and I'm looking forward to enjoying them in my winter oatmeal. Home-dried fruit can be stored in sealed containers on a shelf, but for longer life it is best to keep it in the freezer until you are ready to open a container. For this reason, it is also best to store it in more smaller containers (I use ball jars) rather than fewer larger containers.
Fresh picked berries
The deyhdrator (Nesco Snackmaster - 400 watts - 7 trays)

Berries partially dried - you have to check them periodically to take out any that are done before the rest.

A sample of the finished product.


Cindy said...

Hi! I found this through google! Strawberries are just coming in here now and I really want to use the dehydrator, but I have never dried fruit before. Did the strawberries come out hard or were they still a little soft?

Meggin said...

Cindy, I'm glad you found me and I hope you like the blog! The strawberries came out pliable enough to eat straight. You have to check them periodically in the last couple hours of drying, since you never know exactly how long it will take--drying times vary with the food, the size of the food, the humidity that day, etc.