Dried and Canned Foods

Drying

I got to test drive a friend's NESCO Snackmaster one weekend in September. Here were my results!

Herbs

From my research, herbs looked to take the longest, so I figured I'd let them go first. From my garden, I clipped rosemary, garlic and onion chives, oregano, stevia, and spearmint. Everything was rinsed in cold water, patted dry, then arranged on trays.

Results & Verdict

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Vegetables

I was mostly excited about dehydrating zucchini. I started baking zucchini chips last week and had been going through them like crazy - they make a great alternative to potato chips, but are incredibly labor intensive. They don't take too long to prep, but you have to watch them like a hawk once they're in the oven. Drying them seemed like a great alternative!

I was also interested in dehydrating tomatoes, then pulverizing them to make tomato powder. I thought this could make a great substitute for tomato paste, which I've started using a lot (mostly in my Spanish rice recipe).

The last on my test drive list was to try making soup jars. I thought the idea of prepping an entire pot of soup (well, minus any meats or liquids) then dehydrating them and storing them in mason jars) so they could easily be dumped into a pot of stock was pretty genius. I wanted to give that a shot with a few of my favorite soup recipes - chicken noodle (carrots, celery, onions, peas), baked potato (red onion, potato, chive, scallions), and chicken poblano soup (poblanos, garlic, tomatoes, mushrooms).

Results & Verdict

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Fruits

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Results & Verdict

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Canning