5 Steps to Dried Fruit

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We’re big ‘snackers’ in our family and at any given time we have a wide array of dried fruits in the pantry which are a hit with the children and adults alike.  It can get quite expensive to be continually buying dried fruits from the supermarket, but I’ve recently started to make our own which is a fun activity for the kids while quite satisfying for me – it’s nice to know exactly what ingredients have gone into it, plus I’m saving a few dollars along the way.  Oh – and they taste great (my fave would have to be the dried oranges, which are extra awesome when dipped in chocolate afterwards.  Making me drool thinking about it – might just go and make some now…)

Granted, it can take some time to dry your own fruit, but the results are well worth it.  Here’s how you do it:

  1. Choose Your Fruit. Particular favourites in this household are apples, apricots, banana, orange (awesome when dipped in chocolate) and pineapple.  Make sure it’s fresh.
  2. Prepare and Slice. Wash your pieces of fruit well and remove all skin, cores & seeds.  Cut into slices, making sure they’re all even sizes (even if using different fruits)  so that they’ll take the same time to dry.
  3. Dip. Prepare a bowl of 1 cup water and 1 cup lemon juice.  Dip fruit slices into the liquid and spread evenly on baking trays.
  4. Dry. Place into a 60°C oven for between 4-10 hours (depending on the fruit chosen and how thinly you slice it).  Leave the door ajar so that steam can escape and check every hour, rotating the trays occasionally.  The fruit will be ready when leathery in appearance and if you tear a slice open you shouldn’t be able to see any moisture.
  5. Store. Store in an airtight container in the pantry.  Enjoy!