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In any kind of emergency situation the ability to dry your fruits and vegetables will give you an ability to preserve more food and store it more easily. Drying foods yourself allows you to choose the best, tastiest varieties and lets you enjoy dried fruits and vegetables the grocery stores don’t carry. Dried berries make wonderful additions to winter muffins. Dried tomatoes perk up a pot of baked beans. Backpackers let lightweight dried vegetable mixes simmer into tempting soups. And the foods you dry yourself cost a lot less than the ones you buy.
Microorganisms and enzymes that spoil food need water to be active. Drying works as a preservation method simply by depriving them of water. Unlike canning, in which you follow precise instructions for packaging and processing times to keep the food safe to eat, food drying is flexible. Decisions about food-piece sizes, food mixtures, pretreatments, and packaging are yours. Drying time is determined less by the clock than by simple tests you perform.
This 32 page document is a great guide to everything you could ever want to know about drying fruits and vegetables, with clear instructions and lots of handy illustrations to guide you through. Whatever drying method you choose, the principles in this guide will apply.
Topics Covered in Drying Fruits and Vegetables
- Drying methods
- Selecting foods for drying
- Preparing foods for drying
- Pre-treating fruits and vegetables
- Drying in a dehydrator
- Making fruit leathers
- Drying guidelines for fruits
- Drying guidelines for vegetables
- Enjoying dried foods
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