Author Michelle Keogh gives readers step-by-step instructions and tips on how to dehydrate a variety of foods that will last for months in the refrigerator or the pantry — and also be nutritionally delicious. (Mother Earth News 2017-10-01)
In Dehydrating at Home, Michelle Keogh, author, chef, recipe developer, and food stylist, offers step-by-step dehydrating instructions for all skill levels and reveals how to protect the colors and tasty flavors of fresh produce while it’s being dehydrated. Her full-color illustrations and diagrams, along with her innovative flavor combinations, make this book a must-have for home cooks in search of new ways to prepare and store healthy meals and snacks. From pantry staples like raisins and fruit leathers to more substantial dishes like vegetable curry, there’s something for everyone — even pets — in this practica1 guide. (Taste For Life 2016-03-01)
About the Author
Michelle Keogh is an author, chef, recipe developer, and food stylist from Australia. She has over twenty years experience as a chef, seven of which have been spent writing recipes and styling food for various publishers and advertising, and food packaging clients.
Karielyn Tillman is the creator of The Healthy Family and Home website where her focus is on simple recipes, using real food and clean ingredients.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
The art of dehydrating foods dates back to ancient times when the sun and wind were used to preserve and save produce for the winter months.
Today, the dehydrator has become a healthy addition to the modern kitchen with many benefits and uses.
I have owned my dehydrator for almost eight years and I use it for everything from drying soaked nuts and seeds, to making creative snacks and treats, to just drying tasty seasonal fruits so I can enjoy them all year round.
One of my favorites is strawberries. During strawberry season, I like to stock up and will buy one or two flats of strawberries. I’ll bring them home, prep them, load up my dehydrator and then we get to enjoy dried strawberries long after strawberry season is over.
I also love making healthy snacks like fruit roll-ups, crackers and chips for my two young boys. This way I have control over the quality of ingredients used — no preservatives, or artificial colors and flavorings. The boys prefer them to store-bought snacks because they taste better, and I prefer it because they’re not packed with empty calories and little nutrition.
Another great benefit of dehydrating, of course, is that it’s so economical compared with buying pre-packaged dried snacks or herbs in the store. But the number one reason I use my dehydrator over other appliances in my kitchen is for the health benefits. The human body is made up of living cells that need living “live” food to maintain optimal health and prevent disease. Every day we have the choice to eat living “live” food or cooked “dead” food. When you use a dehydrator and dehydrate your foods under 118 degrees Fahrenheit (47 degrees Celsius), they remain “live” and retain the majority of their nutrients, as opposed to literally cooking the life out of them.
This book will take you through the process for dehydrating each type of food with helpful hints and delicious recipes. Each chapter focuses on a different skill, from drying simple fruits and vegetables to making fruit leathers, creating tasty jerky, dehydrating nuts and seeds, creating delicious raw meals and sweets, and even making healthy treats for your pets. Once you have the hang of a particular skill, feel free to experiment with different ingredients and flavors; you’ll find dehydrating a very forgiving method of preparing food, once you’ve mastered the basics.
Dehydrating at Home is a practical guide to transforming perishable fruits, vegetables, meats, as well as nuts, seeds, herbs and spices into a pantry of nutritional wonders with a long shelf life. The book takes readers through the entire process for each type of dehydrating with delicious recipes and handy hints and tips. Practical step-by-step instructions ensure that dehydrations are perfect the first time and every time, and innovative flavor combinations will inspire dehydrated delicacies. The book gives experienced advice on all aspects of food dehydrating, including: The advantages of dehydrating at home How a food dehydrator works its magic while preventing bacteria growth Notes on food safety and retaining favor and color Foods best suited to dehydration Variables that affect drying time, such as humidity, food thickness, fat and sugar content Preparing food for dehydration How to prevent unwanted browning of fruits Safe storage How to purchase and maintain a dehydrator, plus the best accessories. Seven chapters cover all foods that can be dehydrated: Fruits — Quick and easy recipes include Double-Dehydrated Coconut Bananas, Apple Pie Cookies, Watermelon Chips with Lime Vegetables — Savory snacks and recipes for preserving a harvest include Kale Chips, Maple-Dipped Fiddleheads, Garlic Zucchini Chips, Honey Orange Beet Chips, Jalapenos Leathers — Roll Ups that children (and adults) will love include Strawberry and Apple, Blueberry with Lemon Curd, Polka Dot Fruit Jerky — Easy recipes for meat, poultry, and fish jerky include Classic Beef, Teriyaki Beef, Turkey, Smoked Salmon, Chinese Pork Nuts and Seeds — Delicious high-protein snacks full of healthy fats include Cajun Pecans, Tamari Almonds, Flaxseed Crackers Herbs and Seasonings — Delicious, long-lasting ingredients for aromatic additions to every meal include Herbs (Parsley, Chives, Thyme, etc.), Vegetable Powders, Ginger, Hot Chili Flakes Pet Treats — The easy ways to watch the health of a pet include Sweet Potato Treats, Chicken Treats, Salmon Skin Nip. Dehydrating At Home is the ideal reference for cooks with beginning and extensive dehydrating experience alike.