This weekend when I was couponing, I perused the Aldi ad and noticed that they had a dehydrator for $19.99! Since I have never owned a dehydrator, I was excited to see one so cheap! Ever since my dried strawberry Pinterest fail, I was determined to dry my own fruit!
I headed up to Aldi Tuesday morning to get it.
Definitely nothing sophisticated going on here… just your average dehydrator, no fan, no temperature setting… probably made in China BUT, I think it will be nice for my first dehydrator, and for me to experiment with and not feel bad if it breaks. I’m not trying to embrace a raw diet any time soon, but I am a foodie. I love ALL cuisines. Vegan, vegetarian, raw, every ethnicity. There is nothing I hate.
Another good thing about dehydrators is the ability to replace some of the commercially-made snacks with stuff I can make myself so I know exactly what is going in it.
I was so excited when I got it home, that I had to put some fruit in it that night and try it out. I had picked up a ton of fresh fruit on my grocery day after buying it, so I had plenty to try.
Since this was my first time, I just decided to slice everything up small and thin.
I put everything on at about 9pm, and by yesterday morning I already had dried fruit!
Everything turned out great! The only thing is I wished I had sliced them a bit thicker so they would be chewier. These were more crispy and the strawberries kind of remind me of the ones they put in the Special K Red Berries cereal. Still, overall everything was delicious.
I decided to try and make some sweetened fruit to dry – I had some blueberries that I wanted to do something with. Michigan blueberries. I prepared some simple syrup in a pot, and threw the blueberries in.
I was originally thinking that I would dry them as they were, but after simmering them for an hour they were pretty well destroyed… I’ve never cooked berries before. Then I got the bright idea to make fruit leather! I took the blueberries and pureed them in my Magic Bullet. Then I spread them out on parchment paper and put them in the dehydrator.
After just a few hours in the dehydrator, they were ready to eat! Neil tried some, and he loved it! Since this was just the first go, I will be trying another recipe next time. I just posted one on my Facebook page that doesn’t involve cooking the fruit. I plan on trying that this weekend.
I also have blueberry syrup now!
Now, I just need to figure out what to do with it. I’ve been pondering making some dressing… but I plan to research this a bit further…
After this, it was time for steak fajitas!
I started by preparing a marinade for the skirt steak that I had gotten from Honey Bee market.
Next, I made up some fresh Pico.
After prepping my veggies…
…and Neil shucking the corn…
…everything went on the grill.
I also prepared some frozen platanos on the side, and served it with some queso fresco.
Everything was delicious, and we had plenty for leftovers today! Neil came home for lunch, and we had some then as well as munched on them for dinner. The skirt steak was perfect, and Honey Bee tenderized it for me at no extra charge. It definitely made a difference! This is one of my favorite meals to make, because it is so so easy and tastest awesome and fresh. It’s a great way to incorporate lots of veggies too! YUM.