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Cookbooks About Dehydrating & Rehydrating Food


TdeV
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14 hours ago, TdeV said:

Does anyone have recommendations for cookbooks (or websites) which provide ideas (recipes) for using dehydrated fruit and vegetables?

 

TIA

 

I've seen articles in the Mother Earth News over the years, so you could try their site. Most blogs/recipe sites I've seen with info on working with dehydrated veg are of the prepper/survivalist variety, so a) their culinary qualities may not be of the best; and b) frequenting them may result in... interesting... alterations to the suggested pages and ads you encounter subsequently.*

 

Dried fruit is easier, you can just Google recipe "[specific dried fruit] recipe ideas" and then winnow the results for sites you've previously used and/or have confidence in.

*I'd suggest using your browser's "incognito" mode (though Chrome will still report your searches to Google even with that turned on, according to a recent lawsuit, so it's better to use Firefox or some other alternative browser)

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“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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Seconding their use in soups and braises -- I find the texture of not-entirely-rehydrated items to be a nice complement to the other soup components.  

 

That aside -- I am the cook for my hiking group, which led me to eventually get into dehydrating (one of our group is strong as an ox and will carry anything anywhere including full bottles of liquid courage;  but at some point I realized that I was being downright abusive and perhaps I could just, you know, dehydrate the food component of our actual meals instead of making her carry frozen blocks of what-have-you.).  

 

Anyway, I have now looked into a number of cookbooks for dehydrated backcountry eating.  As @chromedome has pointed out -- the aim of this type of food is obviously distinct in that it maximizes calories per ounce.  In the backpacking context, it also prioritizes the kind of tastiness that will induce an exhausted person to eat more (hello, salt). 

 

But who knows, it may give you some ideas.  In order of favor:

 

"Backcountry Eats" by Kevin Ride (he also has a blog, or used to);

"Dirty Gourmet" by Aimee Trudeau, Emily Nielson, and Mi-Yan Kwan (a lot of the recipes in this book are not from dehydrated components);

"The Dehydrator Bible" by Jennifer MacKenzie, Jay Nutt & Don Mercer (not just backpacking, actually only has one chapter on camp food)

"Mary Bell's Complete Dehydrator Cookbook" (not backpacking either)

"The Dehydrator Cookbook for Outdoor Adventurers" by Julie Mosier.  

 

Unfortunately, the Time Life Good Cook book on "Preserving" does not contain a lot of recipes using dried foods, although it does have a section on the technique. 

 

On the leather thickness problem -- it got easier for me when I bought myself an offset spatula.  I then eyeball for variations in translucence.  It's aggravating when the middle isn't fully dried but the edge is approaching crispy, so I tend to push more material outward, which creates a bit of elevation at the edge.  Then -- when the major portion of the leather is done, I can just cut off the still-moist edges and eat them right then.  Like licking the beaters.  

 

If you store your leathers in the freezer, you don't have to worry about residual moisture, but it is annoying to have to freeze something which one was attempting to otherwise preserve.  

Edited by SLB (log)
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This summer I've used my Anova Precision Oven (APO) to dehydrate varieties of fruits and vegetables. The beginning of that discussion is here (needs updating).

 

I've purchased a few (cook)books about dehydration which have uneven but largely overlapping content about how to dehydrate some foods. 
 
Curiously, I haven't found many recipes for what to do with the dehydrated food, other than for meals while wilderness camping or snacks on the trails, neither of which I do. Many times in the past I've purchased dried foods, only to have them get too old because I didn't find a way to use them. In the next post, I'll list the books I have.
 
Could you please list cookbooks, websites, or recipe titles for inspiration about using dehydrated foods.
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My books were randomly purchased, though I think the books at the top of my list are more useful to someone newly learning about the techniques for dehydration.
 
Bell, Mary T. - Complete Dehydrator Cookbook (©1994)
This was the first book where I started to understand what to do.
 
Hertzberg, Ruth; Vaughan, Beatrice; Greene, Janet - The New Putting Food By (©1973, Third printing 1983)
This book includes information on canning, freezing, etc.; there is one chapter on drying. Some of the modern methods are now a bit antiquated, but there are plenty of explanations why certain issues are important. From the reference section, I found links to USDA
 
National Center for Home Food Preservation - Drying
 
Drying Foods at Home - National Agricultural Library
 
Keogh, Michelle - Déshydrater Les Aliments Chez Soi ©2015, 2016 (Dehydrating at Home)
Ms Keogh designed several snacks for feeding her family. I never found the book in English, though used English versions are available online. I've found it very entertaining to puzzle out exactly what she's saying.
 
Gangloff, Tammy; Gangloff, Steven; Ferguson, September The Ultimate Dehydrator Cookbook (©2014)
 
Bell, Mary T. - Food Drying With an Attitude (©2008)
 
 
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11 hours ago, chromedome said:

 

I've seen articles in the Mother Earth News over the years, so you could try their site. Most blogs/recipe sites I've seen with info on working with dehydrated veg are of the prepper/survivalist variety, so a) their culinary qualities may not be of the best; and b) frequenting them may result in... interesting... alterations to the suggested pages and ads you encounter subsequently.*

 

Dried fruit is easier, you can just Google recipe "[specific dried fruit] recipe ideas" and then winnow the results for sites you've previously used and/or have confidence in.

*I'd suggest using your browser's "incognito" mode (though Chrome will still report your searches to Google even with that turned on, according to a recent lawsuit, so it's better to use Firefox or some other alternative browser)

 

Don't forget to add "leather" to the search terms.

 

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@SLB, Food Drying with an Attitude by Mary Bell has some interesting, though eclectic, recipes and procedures. My difficulty was that this was one of the first books on dehydration on which I relied. Thus I started with a skewed understanding of the practise. When I found her first book, Complete Dehydrator Cookbook, I breathed a great sigh of relief!

 

Food Drying with an Attitude includes recipes for Pockets. An applesauce fruit leather is rolled into a triangular pocket, which was previously stuffed with dried fruits. So in this case, you eat the whole thing!

 

So, not a basic book. Definitely things you might not have thought about.

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Don't have a cookbook rec for you, but as a regular maker of muffins, I use dehydryated fruit in them -- blueberries, cherries, apples, peaches, pears, figs, dates.  Dehydrated veggies, I find, are good in quiches; I make one with ham, gruyere and dehydrated cherry tomatoes that's pretty wonderful. Have been known to throw dehydrated green beans, sliced squash, eggplant into soups and stews.

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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  • 1 month later...

Backcountry Eats by Kevin Ride ©2021 (eG-friendly Amazon.com link) follows a guy (and some friends) who do a lot of hiking, backpacking, canoeing and camping who was/were desirous of better food than can usually be purchased ready-made. All the recipes are first made at home and then dehydrated so they are light and non-perishable. Most of the recipes are accomplished by covering the food with water, bringing to boil, and then resting for 10-15 minutes.

 

While it's opposite what most folk on this thread might use dehydrators for (Mr. Ride dehydrates frozen vegetables, cooked rice and beans), there's a lot of generally useful information about dehydrating and rehydrating food.

 

And I read every single one of the 100+ recipes!

 

 

 

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