I’ve had my dehydrator for just under 2 months now & I couldn’t be happier with my purchase! I’ve enjoyed being able to dry so many things already & we’re still in the middle of growing season here in Southeast Tennessee! If you follow me on Facebook, you’ve probably seen several of the items that I’ve dried so far. While I’ve had to add a little extra drying time to several of the items due to increased humidity (and a very few days of rain), everything has dried exactly like it’s supposed to.
Here’s a few pics of some of the items that I’ve dried so far:
These are my Crimini Mushrooms & Dried Cherries
Yesterday, I dried 130 cloves of garlic, sliced!! Isn’t it beautiful!!
I’ve also dried strawberries, bananas,apple rings, bell peppers, jalapenos, green onions, banana peppers, onions, and various herbs.
Dried Bell Peppers, Strawberries, & Apple Rings
Today, I have potato slices dehydrating, which will be used for dishes such as au gratin potatoes in the future. Having a dehydrator is enabling me to take even more advantage of fresh fruits & veggies while they are in season by allowing me to increase my storage space (dehydrated foods take up much less space and, like with canning, I’m able to rely less on my freezer/refrigerator. The really good thing about this is that, if we were to be without power for extended periods of time, I will not have to worry so much about my foods going bad. Yes, I still have lots of meat in my freezers, but a lot of this can also be canned, if I want/need to. And I will probably can some things just for ease of use for those days when I need to get dinner on the table very quickly. Our plan is to also look at getting a generator at some point (when funding allows) so that we can run the refrigerators & freezers & not have to worry so much about losing our food stores. I really strive for “no-waste” when it comes to food. If it looks like we’re not going to finish something before it goes bad, I will either freeze it into individual portions, freeze the little portions left to be revamped into another meal, or, if it’s past its prime, it goes out to the chickens. (Not moldy or rotten, just past what/when I know my family will eat it.)
I’m so thankful that God has blessed me with a love for cooking, baking, canning, & putting food up for my family. It truly is a labor of love that I enjoy, & I enjoy knowing that I have helped to save my family money & stretch my husband’s paycheck by preserving foods in so many ways.