When we went to Israel last spring - notice how I'm just throwing that casually into conversation as if we just run over there every other day? - we went up on Mount Masada. Way up. On a monorail. Made out of glass. But that's a different story. Anyway when archaeologists explored those ruins they found dehydrated wheat that had been stored as part of the food available for the soldiers/families who lived there a couple of thousand years ago. They took it back to the lab and it sprouted! Not only that but dehydrated wheat found in pyramids has also sprouted! People have been dehydrating food to last from one summer to the next ever since man figured out how to do it. Even during World Wars I and II Americans dehydrated food because of the shortage of canning supplies. All of that has been rolling around in my brain until I finally came to this conclusion: if they could do it, I could do it. And not only could I do it, but I should do it. I can stuff - especially love tomatoes and green beans and soup canned, and we love having it in the winter long after the fresh vegetables are gone. I haven't done as much lately since #1 I've gotten older, #2 it's harder to find farm fresh vegetables where I live now, and #3 I work at a mission in Louisiana in the summer and I'm not at home. Dehydrated foods take up much less space than canned foods and last longer - if stored correctly some can last 30 years!
So first I bought this:
It comes with 9 plastic trays that slide in after you put the food on them. You turn on the dehydrator, wait anywhere from 6 to 30 hours depending on what you're dehydrating and it comes out all dried up. The trays look like this.
We plan to make deer jerky soon because we have some meat left from last year and it's time to deer hunt again. I've also dehydrated all this.
If you've been thinking about trying to store extra food in case of whatever - times when the electricity might be out from ice or tornadoes, etc. this is a great way to do it. It takes less time than canning, it takes less space, and it takes less $ to prepare. It costs about a nickel an hour to run the dehydrator.
Does anyone else dehydrate? I could sure use some tips. :)
Oh, and that apple tea? I'm not doing that again. That powder flies everywhere when you're grinding it in the blender and I'm not that Martha Stewart anyway.