Whether you are saving money, giving yourself a project, bringing healthier snacks into your home or just testing out something new—knowing how to use your dehydrator is going to be something that can make or break your experience. There are a few things to know and a few options that you can take, but soon enough you will be on your way to drying the best food around.
Drying herbs is one of the easier ones to handle but they are the most delicate and need to be checked often. You’re going to want to ensure that your herbs are washed, dried and void of the thick stems that come along with them. You won’t want those in your unit. Once you have settled your herbs on the rack or tray without overlapping them, it should only take approximately four hours. Once you have noticed that they are dry and crisp; that’s when they are to be removed. Store them in an air-tight container for up to a year.
Fruits are probably the most common food dried with a dehydrator. Depending on the fruit that you plan on dehydrating, you’re going to want to know what process to use. You will easily find that fruits such as strawberries don’t need to be treated whereas ones such as apples and bananas need to be bathed in a citrus wash that consists of: lemon, lime and/or pineapple juice with water.
Depending on the type of fruit that you are drying and how much water content they have, the times will vary. Look in your manufacturer’s guide to find out what the appropriate temperature and drying time is for your fruit of choice and keep in mind that fruits that have close drying times can be dried together without taking on each other’s flavor.
Jerky. Whether it’s pork jerky, beef jerky, jerky nuggets or bacon jerk; if you’re a meat lover, you probably love yourself some jerky and you can definitely save yourself a lot of money by making it at home instead of heading on over to the local grocery or convenience store and doing so is pretty simple.
Choose your meat of choice and then cut it into strips the thickness that you want your jerky and choose a marinade. You’re going to want to let your meat and marinade sit for approximately twelve hours before bringing it out for dehydration.
You’re going to let your jerky for about 4 hours before checking it. Once you bend your jerky and it cracks and doesn’t break, that’s when you know it’s done and you can store it between one and two months.
The manufacturer’s guide that comes along with your dehydrator will give you plenty of tips, tricks and things to avoid when dehydrating your food. It’s recommended that you read the booklet entirely so you are completely in the know. You should also be able to find in there some recipes and the perfect temperatures to dehydrate your favorite foods.