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What should I dehydrate?
August 12, 2011 11:59 AM   Subscribe

So my friend gave me a Mr. Coffee food dehydrator. What should I make with it?

I eat pretty much anything, and I like things that are unusual or weird. I'm thinking of trying this watermelon prosciutto, for example.
But "normal" things are good too--I've never dehydrated before!
Any advice welcome.
posted by exceptinsects to Food & Drink (16 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
 
Flax seed crackers - soak some flax seeds, add some flavoring, pour out on a sheet, dehydrate.

Crunchy kale - start by just stripping the kale leaves off the stem and dehydrating them, but you can also soak it with some slightly salted water, maybe some grated parmesan, and then dehydrate it.

Any fruit you can get from any neighbor's yard...
posted by straw at 12:10 PM on August 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dehydrated slices of kiwi. So delicious.
posted by corey flood at 12:11 PM on August 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dried apple chips taste great and make your house smell awesome.
posted by mkb at 12:11 PM on August 12, 2011


Beef Jerky
posted by Ad hominem at 12:13 PM on August 12, 2011


banana chips
posted by cosmicbandito at 12:14 PM on August 12, 2011


It kind of takes a special interest, but we've used ours to make backpacking food, based on recipes from a book called Lipsmackin' Backpackin'.

Ours came with a large sheet to go over the drying rack that we can use to make fruit roll-ups, but we mostly just use it to dry berries for cereal or whatever.

And of course, jerky.
posted by LionIndex at 12:29 PM on August 12, 2011


Semi dried tomatoes are really nice to make, and great is sandwiches. Also seconding apple chips, they are super easy to make. I just slice them and toss them in lemon juice so they keep their colour and pop them in the dehydrator. They taste way better than store bought ones. You can also make fruit leathers, I've never made them but eaten some others have made. Imagine adult fruit roll ups. You can also dry veggies if you get lots of produce from you garden, they are great to throw in stews in winter. There are some great videos on YouTube that go in depth about dehydrating all sorts of things. This is a very intersting series about dehydrating, though she is a bit of a "prepper" but I just ignore those bits as her info is very good/interesting.
posted by wwax at 12:42 PM on August 12, 2011


"Sundried" tomatoes! Granted perhaps not as prized to you Californians as to us winter afflicted.
posted by applemeat at 12:45 PM on August 12, 2011


Sweet cherries. (Some people dry sour cherries, but I don't see the point.)
Green beans.
Onions.
posted by Bruce H. at 12:48 PM on August 12, 2011


Yeh beef jerky is like a gangbang for your tastebuds. Also try my lamb and mint jerky. Lamb seasoned with dried mint and salt. It won't last as long as lean beef. Also you can dry small mince/ground beef patties. I only know about the meats. Apologings.
posted by Not Supplied at 12:52 PM on August 12, 2011


Persimmons! Thinly sliced ripe persimmons lose all hint of astingency and come out of the dehydrator tasting like honey. I wait all year for the autumn persimmon harvest so I can dry huge batches.
posted by jamaro at 1:43 PM on August 12, 2011


has anyone said pineapple yet? Usually when you get dried pineapple in the store it's covered in sugar which makes no damn sense at all cause it's already the sweetest thing you'd ever want to eat. Dehydrate some pineapple rings and pop 'em like candy. *absolute favorite*
posted by billypilgrim at 1:46 PM on August 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dried cherry tomatoes are a lovely little candy.

My jerky marinade consists of the following:
Soy sauce or tamari
Worcestershire
Liquid smoke
brown sugar
garlic powder
cayenne
dry mustard

I've never measured; I just mix until it tastes about right.

I like to use trimmed brisket, which tends to be very lean.
posted by Gilbert at 2:09 PM on August 12, 2011


Definitely great for backpacking food. I make chili (vegetarian or meat), Thai cashew tofu, minestrone, risotto, etc ahead of time and dehydrate it for delicious back country food. I usually rehydrate food by adding hot water to the ziploc bag it's packed in in in the morning so it can soak all day, then cook it for dinner to finish the process. It's way better than the expensive and often flavour-free dehydrated food available at MEC/REI. I also dehydrate entire jars of salsa, cans of tomatoes, cans of (water-packed) tuna -- again, all for backpacking. Love the Lipsmackin' Backpackin' cookbook too!

Once I bought several bunches of bananas on sale and dehydrated them overnight. It seemed reasonable at the time but overnight was way too long! They were so solid I could hammer them on the counter and they wouldn't even break. Important lesson learned: you need to be around to monitor the food as it dehydrates. I ended up soaking the bananas in expresso and using them in a coffee/banana bread. But the vision was to make those chewy dried bananas.
posted by lulu68 at 7:59 PM on August 12, 2011


Fruit leather, along with everything mentioned above!
posted by never.was.and.never.will.be. at 2:39 PM on August 14, 2011


Dried blueberries are really wonderful.
posted by KAWC at 8:44 AM on August 15, 2011


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