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 Dehydrating the garden
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Author Off the Grid/Homesteading Skills:  Dehydrating the garden Next Topic  

City Chick
True Blue Farmgirl

1402 Posts

Deb
Chattanooga TN
USA
1402 Posts

Posted - Jul 11 2020 :  08:00:57 AM  Show Profile
I've had a dehydrator for many years. I think this is the 2nd time I've used it. A friend gifted us a bag full of yellow squash. I decided to dry most of it. Directions said 4-5 hours then test. I let it go for at least 9 hours. Most is so dry I could snap them but some are still pliable. Should I put them back in to dry longer?

Also on another note - I now know that I should make a place in the garage for drying. The sound of the motor going all day made me crazier than I normally am.

And why does basil take so long? 24 hours? Seems excessive, but what do I know.

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YellowRose
True Blue Farmgirl

5796 Posts

Sara
Paris TX
USA
5796 Posts

Posted - Jul 11 2020 :  08:35:50 AM  Show Profile
Deb, your squash sounds like it's dried enough. As for the basil most books say to freeze basil rather than drying. Put basil leaves in an ice cube tray or other container and cover with water. Store in freezer bags.

Sara~~~ FarmGirl Sister #6034 8/25/14
FarmGirl of the Month Sept 2015. & Feb 2019

Lord put your arm around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.

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City Chick
True Blue Farmgirl

1402 Posts

Deb
Chattanooga TN
USA
1402 Posts

Posted - Jul 11 2020 :  09:49:56 AM  Show Profile
Thanks Sara! I appreciate it.

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Nancy Joplin
Farmgirl in Training

48 Posts

Nancy
Ontario California
USA
48 Posts

Posted - Jun 13 2021 :  10:58:18 AM  Show Profile
Thanks, Sara! I tried drying my basil, too. I will freeze it next time! I had not used my dehydrator in a long time, but I am having fun with it now! I dried tomato skins for tomato flakes. . .had so many after making sauce that I filled a small jar! They are great on salads and sandwiches! I have heard that I can also sprinkle them on any tomato dish for a little extra flavor. I made some jerky. It came out well. I have dried apricots in the past. I am not planning on putting the dehydrator away any time soon! I want to try drying some zucchini from our garden because there are so many out there that I am afraid that we will get "zucchini-ed" out before we eat them! I have frozen zucchini in the past, so I will probably freeze a bit, too!
Just want to try new ways to preserve things!

Nancy 8352
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YellowRose
True Blue Farmgirl

5796 Posts

Sara
Paris TX
USA
5796 Posts

Posted - Jun 13 2021 :  11:02:50 AM  Show Profile
Nancy come summer you will find a lot of uses for your dehydrator. Two of my favorite things to dry are mushrooms and greens of all kinds. The dried greens are great in winter soups.

FarmGirl Hugs, Sara
FarmGirl Sister #6034 Aug 2014
FarmGirl of the Month Sept 2015 & Feb 2019

Lord put your arm around my shoulders & your hand over my mouth.
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naturemaiden
True Blue Farmgirl

2555 Posts

Connie - Farmgirl #673
Hoosick Falls NY
USA
2555 Posts

Posted - Jun 13 2021 :  11:16:06 AM  Show Profile
I love my dehydrator. I hang bunches of basil upside down to dry for 1-2 weeks, depending on the weather/humidity. Then I strip the basil off the stems and store it in a glass jar. I like making kale chips. Dehydrated food has a long shelf life, especially if you vacuum seal it in a jar. It's one of my preferred food preps.

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MaryJanesNiece
True Blue Farmgirl

4871 Posts

Krista
Utah
USA
4871 Posts

Posted - Jun 14 2021 :  1:52:19 PM  Show Profile
I have a dehydrator. I need to use it more often. I know how wonderful it can be to use but I just never get around to it. Hopefully this year with my garden I will be better.

Krista
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AndreaPA
True Blue Farmgirl

322 Posts

Andrea
Factoryville PA
USA
322 Posts

Posted - Aug 01 2021 :  11:36:39 AM  Show Profile
Hi Deb. I have a round dehydrator and I have shredded zucchini in it right now. I find that I need to rotate the trays part way through - spin the around. The back side seems to dry slower and I have no idea why. If some of your squash is drier that others, try flipping your trays if you have a square dehydrator or spinning 1/4 or 1/2 way around for round ones.

I dehydrate grape tomatoes - cut in half. Apples - chopped and sliced. Garlic - chopped and sliced. Chopped kale. Last year I did onions and celery. If you buy celery and don't use it all chop & dehydrate it. This year has been so wet I put my herbs in the dehydrator at 90 degrees. Oregano, basil, dill leaves, sage. I normally let them air dry.

My dehydrator sits in a closed in porch and I use it a lot!

Andrea
Farmgirl# 8166
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msdoolittle
True Blue Farmgirl

1123 Posts

Amanda
East Texas
USA
1123 Posts

Posted - Sep 19 2021 :  11:44:28 AM  Show Profile
In response to Deb's first post: Yes, what is it about basil that takes SO LONG? Granted, I turn down the temp for herbs to about 100 degrees, but geez, you'd think that a thin leaf like basil wouldn't take so long. Almost 2 days to dry totally! Still, it was so worth it; it's very pungent when you taste it and will be awesome in sauces.



FarmGirl #1390
www.mylittlecountry.blog
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sherone_13
True Blue Farmgirl

2430 Posts

Sherone
Evanston WY
USA
2430 Posts

Posted - Sep 22 2021 :  09:17:04 AM  Show Profile
I'm dehydrating herbs as we speak. Basil does take longer, but is so worth it. I've alsp heard of putting basil in ice cube trays, then pouring olive oil over it. Put it in the freezer until solid. Then transfer to ziploc bag and store in the freezer. To make a dish, pull one or two cubes out and throw in the pan to thaw. I think this would be fun to do with Italian herb mix too.

I am going to try to dehydrate zucchini since I have a plethora of squash right now. My husband is drying antelope jerky right now, so I might have to wait. Our house smells so good with the jerky jerking and the herb in the other dehydrators. It helps to have multiple dehydrators for these busy times when you have so much excessive produce.

Happy drying, girls!


Sherone

Lean on me, when you're not strong, And I'll be your friend, I'll help you carry on, For it won't be long, 'Til I'm gonna need, Somebody to lean on.

Farmgirl Sister #93
FGOTM August 2021

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msdoolittle
True Blue Farmgirl

1123 Posts

Amanda
East Texas
USA
1123 Posts

Posted - Sep 22 2021 :  11:04:53 AM  Show Profile
I have heard of the ice cube trick, too, Sherone. I haven't tried it, but I'm sure it would work just great. I dried zucchini and man...it makes some really good chips! I think next time I dry some, I'll add some kind of spice to them. Maybe just some garlic pepper or something. Maybe some pizza seasoning. Yum. I love the smell of the dehydrator going. Free incense. Ha.



FarmGirl #1390
www.mylittlecountry.blog
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sherone_13
True Blue Farmgirl

2430 Posts

Sherone
Evanston WY
USA
2430 Posts

Posted - Sep 23 2021 :  07:46:08 AM  Show Profile
I found this cool video about the herbs in oil

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t08w_QF4JmQ&list=PLye1JIzaiQ6rqjeMdQy_3CnKitH5NKgAh&index=8

Sherone

Lean on me, when you're not strong, And I'll be your friend, I'll help you carry on, For it won't be long, 'Til I'm gonna need, Somebody to lean on.

Farmgirl Sister #93
FGOTM August 2021

Our Etsy Shops
http://www.annapearlsattic.etsy.com

http://www.taylorstowels.etsy.com

http://www.tinytaylorhomestead.etsy.com

Our Thrive Life Store

http://www.tinytaylorhomestead.thrivelife.com

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