Ginger Gold Apples
Last week I froze 20 pounds of organic peaches from my Azure Standard order. I also got 20 pounds of organic Ginger Gold apples! The only problem is that I’ve never tried Ginger Gold apples before and none of us liked them very much for fresh eating. They are a summer apple and instead of a crisp, tart apple (the kind we like), they were kind of soft and not very flavorful.
When I took my first bite, I wrinkled my nose and thought ‘Wow, we have 20 pounds of apples that I don’t really want to eat.” However, we all like dried apples, so into the dehydrator they went. Guess what, they taste great dried!
I’m on my second load in the dehydrator as I write this, and there are a few more to go after these are done.
Drying apples is pretty easy, although it can be messy and time consuming. I used my apple corer, peeler, slicer dohicky. It makes very quick work of this part of the job. However, if you really want your apples completely peeled, they either need to be perfectly shaped or you’ll be peeling a bit by hand. I didn’t care if they had peels. They apples come out in a long spiral slice that I broke into smaller pieces to lay flat on the trays
I used to work at getting as many slices as I could on each tray, but I don’t worry so much about that now. I think they dry faster when they aren’t packed in like sardines. I set the temperature for 115 degrees Fahrenheit and went about my business. I didn’t treat the apples with sulfur, so the finished product will need to go in the refrigerator for long term storage. That may not be a big problem, since they’ll probably disappear pretty quickly.
I always unplug the dehydrator when I go to bed because I’ve read that one model (I don’t remember which one) was recalled for catching fire…not good. Mine is an older Nesco model that is no longer made, so I don’t want to take chances. It took two days (approximately 24 hours total) to finish drying the apple slices. You can sprinkle them with cinnamon and/or sugar if you like. I felt that the apples were sweet enough on their own.
I like having multiple methods of preserving food for the winter. Dehydrating is a nice way to save fruits, veggies, and herbs for later. If dried until crispy, they will be shelf stable for a long time. I have read that you should blanch vegetables before dehydrating to prevent the natural enzymes from causing deterioration. I haven’t had a problem with this, but I think I will try a batch each way and see if the blanched ones taste better. Blanching isn’t necessary for fruits.
Do you dehydrate fruits, veggies, and herbs? What would you do with 20 pounds of apples that you didn’t like for fresh eating?