Thursday, September 2, 2010

Solar Dehydrating Fruits and Vegetables

I love dehydrating foods. There is nothing better than a freshly sliced, dehydrated yellow tomato, sprinkled with sea salt.  Yummy!  And if you like the taste of basil, sprinkle a little on your tomatoes as you are dehydrating them.  The smell in your kitchen will be heavenly. 
The only problem I have with my dehydrator is that it is too small and it uses so much energy to operate.  The plan is to reduce my carbon footprint isn't it?  (Not to mention the high cost of electricity.)

Then I stumbled on this: 
Photo courtesy of
I don't know why it hadn't occurred to me sooner that I could make a solar dehydrator. 

My granny and mother used one for years.  Although, theirs was made of a bed sheet and sometimes the back window of the car.  I can still remember the dried green beans and apples.

So...I am going to make a "solar dryer". I think I will do some research on it and see if you could make a dehydrator and cooker combo.  Maybe it could be used to cook meals when you are not dehydrating.  A dual purpose baby. 

If anyone has experience with one of these or a  solar cooker, please give me your input. 

I use an easier method of preparing the apples than the method mentioned in the article.  I wash and rinse the apples well and slice them down the middle. I take a melon baller and remove the seed pocket on both sides of the apple. Then I slice them on a "meat" slicer. Spray with lemon juice and dehydrate. You don't waste the fiber in the peels. The slices are thin, so the peel is fine. Granny Smith apples are great this way, it enhances the tart flavor.

I prepare tomatoes very similar.  I wash them and slice on the same "meat" slicer.  The tomatoes get more intense and sweet with drying and these are better than potato chips. The yellow tomatoes are better than the red tomatoes dehydrated, in my opinion. 

1 comment:

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