Things to Consider When Drying Foods
There are many ways to preserve foods and drying is one of the easiest and tastiest around.
Just as there are several ways to preserve foods, there are several ways to dry them as well. Here are some methods for drying foods:
* The Oven Method – The oven method is perhaps the easiest way to dry foods.
It is also one of the best ways to begin drying foods, as it is simple to follow. Set your oven to the low setting (approximately 150 degrees).
Leave the oven door propped open for proper drying.
Select your meats, slicing them approximately ½ inch in thickness and place them on individual trays.
Rearrange your trays accordingly so that they cook and dry evenly. Depending upon your recipe will dictate how long to dry your meats for.
* The Sun Method – There are several types of equipment that can be purchased at your local home and garden store to assist in drying foods naturally in the sun.
You can also create your own platform for drying fruits with some simple ingredients you purchase at your local home store.
* A Food Dehydrator – Dehydrating food means that you are taking out all the moisture by cooking food on a low heat setting.
A food dehydrator is the new-fashioned way to achieve something age old.
When purchasing a food dehydrator, look for one that has several trays, which you can stack for higher quantities of drying, and a thermostat that is appropriate for the foods you wish to dehydrate.
While there are several methods in which to dry foods, there are also several things to consider when drying foods:
* Remember that salt draws out moisture from food, which makes it less likely to become contaminated, by bacteria.
* The less water and moisture, the less chance for bacteria to grow.
* There are different types of food hydrators. Choose the one that suits you best, either a vertical or horizontal air vent system. Horizontal works best if you are concerned about drippings of one type of food down into the tray of another.
* It is best to dry fruits and vegetables outdoors in the natural sunlight as compared to meats. Humidity and moisture are elements that cannot be controlled outdoors.
* Using your oven to dry meats may not be as cost effective as drying meats in a food dehydrator. The use of gas or electric for extended periods of time on a low setting may spike your utility bills.
With these various methods of drying foods and the tips as well, you will be well on your way to drying foods, saving money, and time as well as enjoying the fruits of your labor.
Every year, a lot of people can and freeze foods to ensure they have the foods they love on hand when winter rolls around and they are out of season.
To learn more about how you can start preserving foods visit the section here about how to preserve foods by canning and freezing them.
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