So what are the benefits of drying food? Pressure cooking preserves food, too, but kills all the enzymes at 240 degrees. Canning also destroys water soluble vitamins. Freezing is the other best way to keep your fruit and vegetables, but nutrients are lost over time, and most people just can’t keep much in their limited freezer space. I have a large freezer and two fridges with small freezers–and I still never have enough room to preserve everything I want to keep.
Dehydrating with Excalibur is safe, with dark doors to avoid nutrition loss from light. The 3000 model has an automatic 26-hour timer so you can leave food drying overnight or even while you’re out of town.
Storebought fruit leathers and dehydrated fruits often contain sulfites, sugar or corn syrup, and other preservatives and chemicals. They’re also expensive! At the end of summer, I often pick fruit from my neighbors’ trees that would otherwise go to waste. (Make sure you get permission first!) Dried apricots are one of my favorite things, and they’re so easy to make: just wash them, pop them in half, and put them on the dryer trays until dry. You can also puree fruit in your BlendTec Total Blender, pour it onto the Teflex sheets, and dry it into fruit leather.
To make the crackers, chips, flavored almonds, and other fun stuff in the Crunchy Snacks Recipe Collection, or all the fun stuff in Ch. 7 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods, you definitely need a food dehydrator. It’s a great way to make inexpensive, “live” snacks that nourish you well.
So here’s the link to get all the benefits of drying food: