Drying apricots, peaches and plums is popular since they make such a lovely snack sweet.
Although we’re exhorted to ‘eat 5 a day’ don’t forget that they’re quite high in sugars and everything in moderation.
The method detailed below is for drying in an oven but if you’ve a dehydrator then follow the instructions with your machine.
They’ve become remarkably cheap in recent years and can be picked up for next to nothing on Ebay at times.
How to Dry Apricots, Peaches & Plums etc.
- Plums and apricots can be dried whole but, if they are of large size, they are better halved and stoned. Peaches need to be halved and stoned.
- Wash the fruit, pat dry with kitchen roll or clean tea towel and place the fruit in a single layer on the drying tray.
- If they are halved, they should be placed with the cut side up so that the juice does not run out. We want the liquid to evaporate leaving the goodness and flavour behind.
- Start the drying process at 50°C/120°F/Gas Mark 0. The skins will burst and some of the juice will be lost if they are dried at a higher temperature.
- Once the skins begin to shrivel, the temperature can be raised to 65°C/150°F/Gas Mark 0 to complete the drying process. To keep the temperature of the oven low you can leave the door ajar but if you do be careful of children and pets.
- When finished, remove the trays from the heat source and leave to cool at room temperature for 12 hours. Pack the fruit in wooden or cardboard boxes lined with greaseproof paper or, alternatively, airtight jars or containers and store in a very dry place.