Monday, June 22, 2015

Solar Dehydrator


Dehydrating food is an age-old practice that still occurs, but often with much fancier equipment!
We've owned and loved food dehydrator's in the past, a his & her's set; the former for beef jerky and the latter for fruits and veg. This time we opted to try solar dehydration and take advantage of summer sunshine!

This Runner Duck design is fantastic http://www.runnerduck.com/dehydrator/dehydrator.htm but until we can build it, we tried out a bamboo steamer. I was at a loss for finding dried daikon radish for a Japanese recipe, so we made our own. It seems kind of frivolous to take fresh food, dry it then re-hydrate it, but it's not all for none. The flavour is much more concentrated and in the case of daikon, stinkier!

In old alley's in Shanghai, you can count on finding families drying anything from tea to fish, including vegetables of every shape and sort. They use circular woven bamboo trays with a lip around the edge, or simply an old wooden table! Just slice and sun-dry!


We also purchased bamboo shoots to dissect (and eat!)
Bamboo is such a diverse grass, used for food, fabric and wood and replenishing itself at a rate of 35 inches in 24 hours makes it an eco-friendly option!


When sliced super thin with a veggie peeler, the daikon dried in the afternoon sun over a period of 5 hours.

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