Why You Should Dry Fruit

You can make your fruit last much longer by drying it at home.

Store-bought dried fruit can be rather expensive and quite often contains sugar and/or sulfur (to prevent browning), which have undesirable side effects on our digestive systems. Although using a commercial dryer really is the easiest option, you can dry fruit in your own oven.

Why would you want to do this?

Drying allows you to preserve the bounty of a harvest or a bulk produce purchase and prolong the taste of the season, and dried fruit does not take up refrigerator or freezer space.

How is this different from the store-bought version?

Packaged dried fruit is often not entirely dry, so your homemade version may be drier and a little less flavorful than what you can buy. Manufacturers keep the fruit soft by vacuum-packing and/or using preservatives, but isn’t that what you’re trying to avoid?

Is there an easier way?

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If you are serious about wanting to dry fruit, consider buying a food dryer or sharing the purchase of one with a friend. A food dryer is designed specifically for drying food, and it uses much less energy than the oven does.

This article was excerpted with permission from the book Urban Farm Projects: Making the Most of Your Money, Space, and Stuff, copyright 2014, I-5 Publishing, LLC. For more budget-friendly and environmentally conscience projects and recipes, pick up a copy today!

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