How to Dehydrate Food Safely ~ Overview

How to
Food Safely
~ Overview

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Easy Food Dehydrating Podcast

This Show's Transcript:

Hi there. Check out Susan's tips and tricks on how to safely dehydrate food.

Hi there. It's Susan Gast here from Easy Food Dehydrating. Thank you so much for stopping by. 

Hey, we're going to teach you how to dehydrate food safely for long-term food storage, especially in these inflationary times. Hey. Food prices have pretty much doubled, haven’t they? So you need to take advantage of fresh fruits and vegetables when they're on sale in the market or when they're in season. This way, they won't go off because you will have dehydrated them and stored them properly.


There's plenty of methods to preserve food, such as canning, freezing, and smoking. No, not that kind of smoking, but, you know, the old-fashioned way of smoking. And you'll learn how and where to best store your dehydrated goodies, too.

I want you to know how easy it is to dehydrate food, whatever the reason or the season. So I try to help folks out daily by telling them about how to dehydrate fruit, vegetables and meat. And of course, the 'all important' how to store it safely by using oxygen absorbers after you've dehydrated your fruits and veggies and you're ready to either put them in vacuum sealer bags or Mason jars.


Have you ever thought about making raisins? It's so easy. Just dehydrate grapes. How about making zucchini chips? Yeah, you'll learn how to do that too.


We store our dehydrated foods in plastic lidded bins, feed buckets with lids, vacuum sealer bags, vacuum sealer rolls, plastic wrap, Mylar bags, Mason jars and in them go the oxygen absorbers, as I just mentioned. 


I'll also teach you the Foodsaver and the best use and where to place your bags for proper sealing and I'll go over the two dehydrators I have. I have a Nesco and an Excalibur. Both are starter models and both are still working to this day. I only have a small family. There's only the two of us, so I don't need an eight tray version. Mine are both four tray versions. Having said that, you can purchase more trays if you want to dehydrate more foods. Just don't overly stack them too high. We're not making the Leaning Tower of Pisa here. 


Regarding the plastic lidded bins, they must be airtight. If they've got those handles that flip up and down on the side, they are not airtight, but they are great for storing the Mylar bags. Inside the Mylar bags will be three or four of your vacuum sealed pouches, okay? The food buckets with lids - they are airtight. And Amazon has some great lids with the screw out center. It makes it really easy to gain access without hurting your fingers and fingernails. Oh, there's nothing worse than when you've got cold hands and you're trying to pry off a lid. Ask me how I know. 


Regarding the vacuum sealer bags - self explanatory, please make sure you get ones that are three mil thick so they don't puncture as easily. There are vacuum sealer rolls available. And these are great because you can cut them to whatever length you need. 


Plastic Wrap... I mentioned plastic wrap... that is to wrap around your vacuum sealed packages, and you say, well, why do that? It's already vacuum sealed. This plastic wrap helps cushion the packages, if you will, when you're placing them inside your Mylar bags, just in case a corner of that bag decides to puncture another bag. 

Mason jars are great because you get to see what's in them. You can see how much is left and they look nice displayed on your kitchen shelf or cupboard. Oxygen absorbers are extremely important and you must use them if you wish your food to last a long time. They come in various sizes, and I'll have to devote a full episode to that because there's a lot to unpack there. 


And again, the Food Saver vacuum sealer - they have lots of modern ones on the market now. I've still got mine from ten years ago and it does the job. And again, I will have to devote an episode to Nesco and Excalibur dehydrators. 


In the Food Dehydrating podcast, I'll show you how to make your own dog food, and it's the best meal your dog will ever eat. Our little miniature pinscher - her coat shines, her eyes are bright. She's such a happy little dog. 


Also, I'll teach you how to create storage space in your house. Yes, believe it or not, people told me, well, you can use a closet. I really have yet to meet any person that has a spare closet in the house. Hey, there's probably one or two, but not in our house. So I did the next best thing, and that will be discussed in a future episode. 


Oh, by the way, we also have two courses on Udemy. One is called Food Dehydrating Made Easy, and it's a three-hour course. I also have Food Dehydrating 101, which is only an hour long course, and you'll get everything you need to know there - gosh, this is shameless promotion here - I have four books: Easy Food Dehydrating; 20 Taste-Tested Easy Recipes that Contain Dehydrated Food; How to Dehydrate Food - the Top 20 Topics with over 225 Questions Answered. And as mentioned before, Make Your Own Dog Food. 


There's all kinds of stuff to dehydrating food and I go over the top, er, I think I've got 14 fruits and I have 16 vegetables. These are the top groups of fruits, such as apples, apricots, bananas, berries, cherries, fruit rolls, grapes, lemons, limes, and oranges, melons, peaches, pears, plums, rhubarb, and strawberries. So now, of course, I'm going to head on over to the vegetable department. Thank goodness I've got my website pulled up here. You can't see that I'm scrolling through because even though I know them off by heart, yeah, you do forget even though I just said you know them off by heart. Okay, the veggies are ... drumroll ... broccoli, butternut squash, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cut corn - fresh or frozen, garlic, green beans, mushrooms, onions, peas, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, and zucchini. 


So if you prep now, you save time later, right? You can easily make a quick bowl of vegetable soup when you've got everything cut up, diced up and dehydrated and put away. All you need to do is just grab a handful out of various jars, add some water, and away you go. It may need a bit of Better Than Bouillon - it is by far the best stock out there, in my humble opinion. It's in a paste form. It's not in a cube that you have to crumble and break your fingers trying to crumble up a cube. Or maybe they got a lot better since I remember the good old days of 30 years ago and the hard cubes that my mom used to get. OXO cubes, I think they were called, hope I don't get into trouble for saying that, but I think that's what they were called.


So I'm going to wrap up this episode as it was just an introduction to tell you what I'd like to teach you in upcoming episodes. So thanks again and have a great day, and I'll see you shortly.

Thank you for listening to Susan's podcast on how to dehydrate food safely.

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