So, I’ve decided that since it’s fall, it is time for some experiments in preserving food for the winter. I’m actually kind of excited about this, because I know absolutely nothing about it. I always just go to the grocery story for my fruit and vegetables. It was kind of ironic when I went to Giant (our local grocery store) this weekend and found organic apples from New Zealand. Now, I’m all for globalization, but here in Virginia it is apple season, while in New Zealand it is the beginning of spring! I was going to go to the farmers market, but I didn’t get a chance to on Saturday and I really wanted to try this, so I found some local organic apples at Trader Joes.
This morning, I peeled and sliced eight apples and put them on screens covered in cheese cloth in the sun. Before you put the slices on the screen, you dip each slice in a bowl with one quart water and 1/4 cup lemon juice. This is supposed to keep them from turning brown. The last time I was at Lowes, I bought a couple cheap window screens to be used for paper making, and they work perfectly for drying as well. I only had two though, so I am also using cooling racks and some baking sheets, I will let you all know if there is any appreciable difference between them.
As you can see in the photo below, I put the screens on the red brick that we have to put the fire pit on. I’m hoping that the brick will help the apples dry a bit faster since they are so much warmer than just plain ground. It is supposed to take 2-3 days normally, so I will let you know how they taste later on! If they’re good, I’m looking forward to putting up a bunch more while they’re in season. Now I just need to figure out what you do with dried apples! I’m sure that there must be recipes for using them creatively.