Now it is really autumn/fall. We have had the first frost and the days are getting shorter.
I’m trying to save the last of the summer. The few raspberries that were left has been dried with some apples in the dehydrator.
The raspberries are saved for a Christmas project and the apples are already a popular snack.
We went for a walk this Sunday and we found “lawyers wig” mushrooms also known as the “shaggy ink cap” or “shaggy mane”. Unfortunately, many had already turned black and dissolved, luckily we found some good ones and “the mushroom expert” made them into an evening meal. I’m not a mushroom expert, so it’s very few mushrooms I dare picking without guidance.
I do know something about apples and here is an easy way to use some of all the wonderful apples that are in season right now.
We have three different apple trees in our garden: Cox Orange, Ingrid Marie and Malus Redlove ‘Circe’.
The first two apple trees were here when we moved in and unfortunately the trees are sick, but the apples still taste good.
We chose our new apple tree because of its beautiful colours. The apples are red on the inside and they almost look like plums. We bought the tree last year – it only gave 3 apples. This year we have had a lot more.
So we have a lot of apples, we’re just not very good at using them, but this year it is going to be different.
We have bought a dehydrator – a fruit/mushroom dryer and it is in the process of drying apples right now. Before we got that, I used the oven to dry apple rings.
Before I started using the dehydrator, I made a test, what would work best – oven or dehydrator? And what would be the best apple taste: plain, with cinnamon, vanilla powder or liquorice powder?
In advance, I favoured the oven – several sheets = more apples done in less time.
So I made several apple experiments in the oven:
A sheet of Ingrid Marie with cinnamon, another with liquorice powder.
A sheet of Cox Orange with vanilla powder from Urtekram – try vanilla sugar if the apples are tart.
The last one is my test sheet with Redlove – I wanted to see which method worked best – dehydrator or oven.
When you make dried apples in the dehydrator, it is not so important how thin the slices are – they actually get better if the apples aren’t sliced too thin.
The slices that I cut on the mandolin slicer, stuck to the grid in my dehydrator and they had little taste. Later, when I made a test with hand cut (slightly) thicker slices, they were perfect and the taste was good.
In the dehydrator I only make apples without added flavours – I tried, however, to dry some mint leaves along with the apples. A piece of mint got stuck in an apple, and was dried with it – it tasted good!
We have bought a lot of apple rings with cinnamon – they were the least popular batch in my experiment. Those with liquorice powder were the ones eaten first – all of us liked them.
In our opinion, the dried apple rings taste super good with or without added flavour – plus they are a healthy snack.
You don’t have to core the apples before you slice them. I just don’t like the texture – therefore I core mine.
If you do not like the apples turning brown, place the rings/slices in water with lemon juice while preparing the rest of the apples. Dab the apple rings dry before they go into the oven/dehydrator.
I store the dried fruits and berries in an airtight container and I’ve put a slice of (oven) dried bread to retain crispness.
I really like the Urtekram products. I use their dried apple cubes in many recipes – now I can use my own dried apples – cut into smaller pieces – for muesli, buns, breadsticks and muesli cookies.
My prejudice against the dehydrator was proved wrong – apples and berries are super good, I don’t have to keep an eye on them and the oven is free for other experiments. So I don’t mind that it takes a bit longer in the dehydrator.
The raspberries are very light – a little like freeze-dried raspberries. I know what to do with them – but it will be revealed sometime in December.
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