We have a simple dehydrator that we use often, and we’ve just ordered a Harvest Right freeze dryer. It started a few years ago when I wanted some apple snitz like my great-grandmother used to make. I tried to dry apples in the oven and wasn’t pleased with the results so I got an inexpensive dehydrator. I paid about $30 for it and it works fine for simple projects.
I’ve dried lots of fruit, herbs, flowers, and veggies. Some things I’ve dried and then turned into powder to sneak into food. Himself hates spinach but can’t detect spinach powder in soup. Powdered strawberries are wonderful in homemade ice cream or cheesecake.
As we’ve gotten older, Himself has a problem with onions. The sad thing is that he loves onions. My solution is to dehydrate them and crunch them up into small bits to add to soups and stews. Using them after dehydrating them doesn’t cause the small gastrointestinal upset as raw or cooked onions. Go figure and go with the flow.
And I now have a good supply of dried apple snitz stored in quart jars for those moments when I want a little snack. One or two apple snitz to crunch satisfies the urge and is, I regret to say, probably better than eating sugar-laden chocolate.
Dehydrators range in price from about $20 into the several hundred dollar range. If you’re not sure if you’ll use a dehydrator, don’t rush out and spend a lot of money. Get a small unit and see how you like it. If you find you don’t want to bother with dehydrating, then don’t. It’s not imperative that you do.
But what about the next step up – a freeze dryer?
Again, you have to decide if it’s right for you. We just ordered a freeze dryer and I’m still a bit queasy over the price tag. I know we’ll use it because I’m preparing and providing for a handicapped individual in the event I’m no longer able to care for him. It puts a different light on how I do things.
I’m also concerned about inflation, the supply chain, the supply chain, and getting older. Freeze-dried foods can last up to twenty to twenty-five years if properly stored. Storing food now is the best hedge against those uncertainties that I can think of. Having a healthy savings account won’t do a thing for me if there’s no food in the stores. So we work on that now.
It may turn out to be little more than very expensive entertainment, but we’re willing to take that risk. Should you? You’re the only person who can answer that question.
Next in series: Water.
The Lady of Holly Tree Manor (The Hideaway)
Holly Tree Manor, The Hideaway, pantry prepping, preparedness, inventory, home food preservation, Doomsday prepping, stock rotation, first-in first-out, auto maintenance, get home go bag, freeze dryer