Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Backpacking Snack: Dried Fruit

One of my favorite things to dehydrate is fruit.  A few summers ago, while on a hike, I tried some of my friend's dehydrated fruit.  And I wasn't expecting to like it.  I hardly ever like dried fruit from the grocery store.  Sometimes I can handle a raisin.  When it is paired properly.  Or maybe I can handle other reconstituted dried fruits in dishes.  But, really I think they are weird.  Why are they soft but not soft?  Why moist?  Actually, I love Sunsweet Ones.

Anyways, dehydrating your own fruit results in a totally different texture and flavor.  And it is so amazing.

We dehydrate fruit a few times each summer to take along with us on hikes.  Some of our favorites are golden delicious apples, pears, peaches, canned pineapple and strawberries.

Anytime I make a batch, I always include canned pineapple (with its juice).  I use the juice to soak the fruit (fruit that browns like apples, pears, etc.) before dehydrating.  The acid in the pineapple juice slows the browning of the fruit.  The fruit needs to be sliced about 1/4th of an inch thick.  It if is much thinner, the fruit will be too dry and crispy.  If it is much thicker, it won't dehydrate evenly.  Fruit should be dried at 135 degrees F.  It usually takes about 6-8 hours.  And of course, you want to dry fruit when it is at its peak of ripeness and freshness.  Otherwise, go with canned/frozen.

In these two bags are two apples, two pears, two peaches, 1 can of pineapple and a handful of strawberries:

I always need some strong sugar carbs to boost my energy during strenuous activities.  Eating a handful of dried fruit really helps.  So does a handful of hot tamales.

We took this fruit on our backpacking trip this past weekend to the San Juans.  It is a very beautiful part of Colorado.  So green.  So rolly.  Best place we have ever camped.  Minus the snow the last night of our trip!  And the fact that our dog somehow broke through the top of our tent and broke it...weirdo!  How that was even possible is still not clear to us.


  1. How awesome that you can do that at home!

  2. Such beautiful pictures! I need to start dehyrdating fruit. We buy it at Whole Foods, but it is often expensive. And I could add some spices to my slices of apple (cinnamon would be great!)