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How to Dry Frozen Fruit

By Joshua McCarron

Dried fruit serves as a fast and convenient snack for hikers and campers in need of portable nutrition. When drying fruit at home, you can either dry portions of the whole fruit or create “fruit leathers” or roll ups. If you plan to use any frozen fruit for drying purposes, the fruit leather application is much more effective. Homemade fruit leather using frozen fruit enables you to monitor which ingredients are in the finished product, and avoid added sugar or chemical preservatives.

Add 1 pint frozen fruit to a blender for every 13-by-15-inch fruit leather you plan to make.

Puree the fruit until it is blended and smooth.

Add 1 tbsp. orange juice or other liquid if the puree seems too thick.

Line a cookie sheet or the tray of your food dehydrator with plastic wrap and smooth out any wrinkles. You can also use special plastic sheets for the dehydrator if you have any.

Pour the fruit puree over the plastic wrap, and spread it out roughly 1/8 inch thick with a rubber spatula.

Set your dehydrator or your oven to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, and dry the fruit for six to eight hours in your dehydrator or up to 18 hours in the oven.

Test for doneness near the end of the drying time by pressing gently on the center of the leather. You should notice no indentation when you press the fruit.

Remove the cookie sheet or tray and peel the fruit leathers from the plastic wrap while they’re still warm.

Roll the fruit leather up and set it aside to cool.

Tips

Add 2 tsp. lemon juice to your fruit puree while it is in the blender if you are using light-colored frozen fruits that will turn brown from oxidation. Store fruit leather wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to one month, or in your freezer for up to one year.

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