Jamie Oliver

forum: Gardening / Growing

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#1 Sat 27 Mar 10 5:43am

dmfootycoach

Member
From Ontario, Canada
Member since Mon 11 Jan 10

Dehydrators

Kiwi Kris and I have been chating regarding meat storage in one of my previous posts and I thought it might bring about a helpful post as to the multiple uses of such a wonderful tool.
I use mine for
Jerky
Drying fruit,
Herbs
Vegetables for making flours or quick soup mixes or natural spices.
What about the rest of us?

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#2 Sun 28 Mar 10 11:00pm

desert.rain

Member
Member since Sun 28 Mar 10

Re: Dehydrators

So far only apples with lemon.  i really need a lesson on how to use it!

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#3 Sun 28 Mar 10 11:13pm

SonomaEddie

Forum super champ
Occupation Chief cook and bottle washer
From Northern California
Member since Sat 10 Feb 07

Re: Dehydrators

I was using lemon on my apples the first time but found that I didn't like the extra tart flavor that it added and since it was only to retard discoloration, I stopped. 
I've only ever used ours for apples, pears and fruit leathers I made with a local plum, a fruit that seems to grow wild here, is quite small and impossible to remove the stone from.  So I just cooked them down, pressed through a sieve and spread the puree on the drying sheet.  It was a big hit.  Kids really liked them.
I guess I did do some dried tomatoes as well. 
If you've got some tips and recipes for other things, dmfootycoach, I'd appreciate it.
Thanks

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#4 Mon 29 Mar 10 5:24am

dmfootycoach

Member
From Ontario, Canada
Member since Mon 11 Jan 10

Re: Dehydrators

To be honest our dehydrator has been a deep learning curve. And I'm always the guniea pig so to speak.
I understand the use of lemon to keep colour but citric acid will do the same. We always grow more than we need so the dehydrator has been a god send in reducing trips to the store.
So heres a few reccomendations
Save your lemon and orange peels dry them until they're brittle and place them in a coffee grinder type device the wife uses them for placeing upon desserts.
Dry all veg and herbs until brittle and place in jars. For certain consitancies like garlic powder,onion powder potatoe powder place in the food proccesor and make into powder.
My favourite soup while hunting is a blend of dried potato dried carrots, leeks, garlic powder reconstituted with a little homemade chicken or turkey stock that has been boiled and all ingredients placed into a thermos.
Fruit leather is always a hit here as we get fresh juice prior to makeing it from in season apples or pears.
Candied fruit like pineapple or lemon is cut into approriate sizes and dusted in icing sugar pierced and dried. Storage length is always short and only ever designed to increase the life span of the food.
Nothing gets wasted here. Carrots are washed,scrubbed then peeled. We put the peelings in the dehydrator. Potatoes going soft; peel cut width wise dry.
Frighteningly enough most dried bananas and pineapples found here are actually deep fried.
I can only hope that helps getting people to reduce the waste.
Anyother questions feel free to e-mail me.

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#5 Mon 29 Mar 10 8:05am

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Dehydrators

Im waiting to borrow my besty's dehydrator as I found a recipe for drying zucchini which I have an abundance of.. also tomatoes are going feral atm...

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#6 Mon 29 Mar 10 11:19am

Kiwi Kris

Forum champ
Occupation Farmer
From New Zealand
Member since Sun 09 Jan 05

Re: Dehydrators

wave Goodmorning, DM!....your last post reminds me of the (old) U.K. sitcom; The Good Life!  cool ....you & your wife, sound very Self-Sufficient!  thumbsup

I was interested to know what, Fruit Leather was, Eddie & DM?, so was 'surfing' & came across "potato & corn chips", & then found a recipe for you too, Frizz, if ya interested...

Pineapple Zucchini Chips....(courtesy of; DehydratorBook)

Ingredients:
1/4 cup of lemon juice
3/4 cup of sugar
12-oz of pineapple juice which is equal to 2 6oz cans of juice
4 cups of zucchini that is peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch pieces

Directions:
You will need to put the lemon and pineapple juice into a 2 qt sauce pan with the sugar.
You will need to bring to full oil on high heat then reduce the heat and the pieces of zucchini.
As it cooks you will want to mash it all into a liquid and boil for at least 15 minutes or until the zucchini turns to an olive green color.
You will need to strain the mixture when done.
Once it has cooled, you will need to put it out on the sheet so that it can be dried at 135 degrees F. for at least 3 to a total of 5 hours.
Break apart for chips.

Also, welcome to, Jamie's Forum, Desert Rain!  smile

Cheers; Kris

Last edited by Kiwi Kris (Mon 12 Apr 10 2:50am)

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#7 Mon 29 Mar 10 10:58pm

SonomaEddie

Forum super champ
Occupation Chief cook and bottle washer
From Northern California
Member since Sat 10 Feb 07

Re: Dehydrators

Looks like I'll be doing some more experimenting with the dehydrator.  thanks for the tips, guys!

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#8 Tue 30 Mar 10 12:38am

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Dehydrators

Eddie - will copy some over from my files .. BRB

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#9 Tue 30 Mar 10 12:39am

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Dehydrators

This is from a friend over at Taste.com.au

Dried Eggplant Chips


You will need
eggplants
lemon juice
chilli, dried or fresh finely diced
tomato pasta sauce, can be bought, but I make my own
fresh parmesian cheese, grated
salt and pepper

How to
Slice eggplants into rounds about 1cm thick. Dip in lemon juice to prohibit disclouration. Spread about 1/2 tablespoon of pasta sauce on one side, top with chilli to taste. Evenly sprinkle a 'good' pinch of parmesian cheese, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Place prepared eggplant rounds into dehydrator trays that have been lightly sprayed with oil, leaving a gap inbetween each one. Dehydrate for approximately 2 hours. The time will depend on how many trays are in the dehydrator, and how much 'topping' is on the 'eggplant chip', I always check after about 1-1 1/2 hours incase I need to rotate the trays.

Once dried to a crisp consistency, they are done. I let them cool in the tray, I find they are easier to remove then. Can be stored for quite some time in an air tight container. Exactly how long I'm not sure as they never seem to last more than a week at my house, but I'd guesstimate they'd keep for a good couple of months at least.

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#10 Tue 30 Mar 10 12:40am

frizz1974

Forum super champ
Occupation Mother of 2 working more than full time
From Wallerawang, Oz
Member since Wed 29 Jun 05

Re: Dehydrators

This one is from the "hunter, angler, gardener, cook" blog.

Sicilian Sun-Dried Zucchini

I had heard that the Southern Italians sun-dried their zucchini, and then either put them up in jars covered in olive oil, or sauteed them as a side dish.
I never did find a recipe, so this one is entirely mine. I think it works pretty well, and will be making this all summer long — it’s a textural thing:
The dried zucchini concentrate what flavor they have, and with less water, become meatier — if I had to serve a vegan, this would be on the menu.
Use a dehydrator if you are in a moist climate, but here in Sacramento I just strung these on skewers and let them dry in our blazing hot garage for 36 hours.
4 zucchini
Salt
Skewers
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon cayenne or espellette pepper
1-2 tablespoons fresh chopped mint
Juice of half a lemon
Slice zucchini into disks about 1/4 inch thick.
Sprinkle salt on a large cookie sheet or two, then lay the zucchini on them. Sprinkle more salt on top. Leave at room temperature for no more than an hour — the longer you go, the saltier the zucchini will be. If you plan on preserving these in jars, go the full hour.
Pat dry with a towel and skewer. Hang the zucchini in a hot dry place for 24-48 hours, depending on the temperature. You want them to be dry, but not hard. Think soft dried apricots…
Once dried like this, they can be stored in jars, covered in olive oil, for months in the fridge.
When ready to cook, heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over high heat until almost smoking. Add the zucchini rounds and toss to coat with oil. Turn the heat down to medium-high and cook until browned, about 3-4 minutes.
In the final minute, add the cayenne and toss to combine, then do the same with the mint. Turn off the heat.
Squeeze the lemon juice on the zucchini when you are ready to serve.

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