Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Apple Experiment

A few months ago,
my wonderful Mother-in-law bought me a dehydrator
at a yard sale.  She had purchased one for herself a little 
bit prior and knew that I would absolutely loved it!

I have always wanted a dehydrator.
I have always had the best memories of my childhood
best friends family.
One of those fantastic memories is how much their 
father loved his dehydrator. 
I can close my eyes and the smell of apples chips and jerky 
waft all around!

I decided that since I had never done this myself,
I should start with the basics....Apples.

But you know me....I can't JUST do apples.
AND even if I did... 
do you know how many different kinds of apples there are?

The Apple Experiment was born.
Round 1:
3 different types of apples, each done in 3 flavors.

So I did a little research on the art of dehydration.
I read and read many different blogs, recipes, and forums.
Did I mention that my machine was from a yard sale and it didn't come with 
a users manual?
I really had no clue were to start.

I found that there were many different recipes 
that included tossing and soaking.
So here's what I did:

Step 1:

So I started with 2 Gala, 2 Granny Smith, and 2 Pink Lady apples.
I peeled and sliced, but I purposefully 
left some skin and varied the width of the slices.
You know, just so that I could figure out how we liked them.

Step 2:

I kept each type of apple in their own separate piles,
and them spilt those piles into thirds.
For my flavors I chose just straight up original, a classic cinnamon, and 
a fun little punch of flavorful guava.

So the originals, we obviously I didn't do anything to those.
I tossed one handful in a bowl of cinnamon, and then
the rest I soaked in guava nectar for about 15 minutes.

Step 3:

I arranged each type of apple neatly on separate trays.
I made sure that they were all organized by flavor so that they would be easier to 
distinguish later.

All of the recipes that I read said to run the machine for 7 hours at a 
specific temperature, but my dehydrator does not have a temperature control, just an 
ON/OFF switch.
So at 6 hours I checked only to find that they were definitely not ready.
I kept an eye on them and ended up running them for a full 10 1/2 hours.

I let them sit in the dehydrator with it OFF for about and hour,
then put them into zip lock baggies.

Step 4:

It was time for the taste test.
The boy and I munched and compared, until we narrowed it down.
Really we loved them all.

The Results:

Like I said they were all amazing! 
But we had our preferences.
We found that the Gala's didn't get as crispy, and there was too much 
cinnamon on all of them.

But in the end.
He loved the Original Granny Smith and I loved the Guava Pink Ladies. 

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