Fruit leathers are pureed fruits which dry to a thin sheet. Any fruit or combination of fruits can be used to make fruit leather. Left over or overripe fruit work great.

Damaged or decayed areas should be removed. Wash fruit. Peeling is optional for fruits like peaches, apples, and pears. Canned or frozen fruit may also be used. Cut fruit into chunks and puree raw fruit in a blender. Some fruits, such as apples or cranberries can be cooked to soften them. Strain cooked fruit to obtain a smoother consistency, or puree in a blender. Add just enough fruit juice, apple sauce, or water to the fruit to enable the blender blades to turn effectively. Pineapple juice, lemon juice, or ascorbic acid may be added to fruits that tend to darken. Remember, the more liquid is added the longer the leather will take to dry.

Taste test puree to determine if additional flavoring would enhance the flavor. Cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla extract, are good options. Sweeten the puree with honey, maple syrup, or sugar, but remember drying concentrates the natural sugars so leathers will taste sweeter after they are dehydrated.

Pour ¾ to 1 cup of fruit on plastic wrap. Puree should be about ¼-inch thick. Spread the puree evenly leaving ¼-inch around the margins. Dehydrate the leather until it can be easily peeled off the plastic wrap and until the center is no longer tacky, it should be dry yet pliable. Most leathers dry in 8 to 10 hours. Roll leather into a log shape. Store in an airtight container, it will keep indefinitely when stored in the refrigerator or freezer, or 6 months at room temperature.

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