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I cannot believe we are just about halfway through August. Where did the time go?! Summer will be waving goodbye before we know it and fall will be creeping up. Of course, in Florida, there really is not much of a transition period between seasons. But we do have to acknowledge the fact that some of the delicious seasonal fruits and veggies we have available to us in the summer will soon be no more. So #SundaySupper is here to Save Summer! We’re canning, pickling, drying, freezing, and whatever else you do to preserve the fresh flavors of summer. Thank you to Tara from Noshing with the Nolands and Stacy from Food Lust People Love for hosting!
I have a weird obsession with dried fruit. I frequent the bulk bins in Whole Foods and stock up on dried papaya and pineapple (the ones with no added sugar!). If I had the money and the room for a dehydrator I would totally get one so I could make all the dried fruit in the world and never be without! After lots of Googling and Pinterest-browsing, I discovered that you actually can make dried fruit WITHOUT a dehydrator. Although it may not be AS dried as it would be with this appliance, it still is feasible and I knew I had to try it out. Peaches and mangos are two of the most delicious summer fruits that will soon leave me hanging. I sliced ’em up nice and thick — remember, these are going to shrink since we’re drying out all of the juices that make them plump — and put them in the oven for the whole freaking day at a very low temperature, 200 degrees.
You are going to definitely need the entire day for this, so don’t plan to make dried fruit on a day when you have a million things to do out of the house. I’d suggest 10 hours, but it’s up to you. I took mine out after 8 hours and they hadn’t completely released all of their juices so they were still a little soft. They did, however, have that chewy texture you get from dried fruit and the natural sugars were definitely developed. There is an elevated amount of sweetness to dried fruit that you don’t get from the fresh produce. I should have left them in for another couple hours, but unfortunately my planning ahead sucks and I had to go out to dinner.
This isn’t really a recipe, per say, but more pointers for making dried fruit without a dehydrator. So let’s recap, shall we?
- Plan ahead since the fruit will need to be in the oven the whole day.
- Slice your fruit thicker than you want the end result pieces to be.
- Set your oven to a 200 degrees.
- Arrange the sliced fruit on a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper. Another option is to set a wire cooling rack on top of the baking sheet and arrange the fruit on the rack. This will allow the juices to fall away from the fruit as it releases. Otherwise, you may get “dried juice” residue sticking to the side of the fruit. It kind of resembles plastic and may freak you out when you see it, but it’s only the juice.
- Flip the fruit onto its other side about halfway through the baking period.
- Once finished, let cool before storing. The pieces will stick together if piled on top of each other, so try to keep them separate if possible. Or just eat them right away. Because they’re yummy, and if you’re as addicted to dried fruit as I am, you won’t be able to resist.
Let’s see all the genius ways my #SundaySupper friends are Saving Summer!
Learn how to …
- Dry Fruit – No-Dehydrator-Needed from Take A Bite Out of Boca
- Freeze Cherries from Pies and Plots
- Freeze Herbs from Rhubarb and Honey
- Make Freezer Harvest Soup Kits from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Make Pesto Cubes from The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
- Make and Freeze Rosemary Butter from Momma’s Meals
- Make Ready to Blend Smoothie Packs for Your Freezer from The Educators’ Spin On It
- Oven Dry Cherries from The Redhead Baker
Sip sunny cocktails and smoothies
- Blueberry, Peaches and Cream Green Smoothies from Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Green Tea and Chocolate Saketini from Ninja Baking
- Sangria from Confessions of a Culinary Diva
Scoop up special salsas and sauces
- Classic Freezer Tomato Sauce from Noshing With The Nolands
- Peach Salsa from The Texan New Yorker
- Pico de Gallo from Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen
- Spicy Apple – Carrot Chutney from What Smells So Good?
- Spring Conserve from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
Jump into jellies, jams and preserves
- Apricot Habanero Jam from Food Lust People Love
- Corn Cob Jelly from Daily Dish Recipes
- Hot Pepper Jelly from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- No Pectin Apricot Jam from Curious Cuisiniere
- Peach Preserves from Delaware Girl Eats
- Pineapple Mango Moscato Jam from Seduction in the Kitchen
- Raw Raspberry-Vanilla Chia Jam from Shockingly Delicious
- Savory Fig and Sweet Onion Freezer Jam from Peaceful Cooking
- Spicy Ginger Tomato Jam with Coconut Sugar from Sue’s Nutrition Buzz
- Spicy Red Pepper Jam from The Wimpy Vegetarian
Pucker up for pickles
- Bread and Butter Pickles from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Pickled Beets and Onions from Kudos Kitchen by Renée
- Pickled Cherries from Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
- Pickled Green Tomatoes from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Refrigerator Pickled Jalapeños with Herbs from Magnolia Days
- Refrigerator Pickled Radish and Turnips from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
- Refrigerator Pickles from Webicurean
- Sweet Pickled Cauliflower from Because I Like Chocolate
Slurp and spoon soup and a side dish
- Easy Garden Fresh Tomato Basil Soup from Neighborfood
- Savory Summer Kimchi from A Mama, Baby & Shar-pei in the Kitchen
Dive into divine desserts
- Easy (no machine) Cherry Cheesecake Ice Cream from Mama Bee Does
- Freeze ’em For Later Peach Berry Hand Pies from eating in instead
- Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries from Peanut Butter and Pepper
- Lemon and Blackberry Meringue Cakes from Happy Baking Days
- Lemon Curd Coffee Crumb Cake with Vanilla Drizzle from Wallflour Girl
- Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream from Killer Bunnies, Inc
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