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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Canning, Preserving and Dehydrating / Dehydrating Times
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    Dehydrating Times

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    Dib's
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:39 am
    Food.com Groupie
    I have a inexpensive dehydrator that I have had for years and years.

    Tomato slices take around 18 to 24 hours to get crisp (I like to puree into powder for paste when needed)
    Mushrooms around 12 hours depending on how thin I slice them.

    I think your machine is having issues-I would consider returning it for a new one.
    HotPepperRosemaryJelly
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:10 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Hi Molly!
    I am buying a new Excaliber. My son has one and he loves it. Will let you all know how I like it. Will be trying it out this summer.
    Won't start planting til the end of April in my part of the country.
    Have to see how it works. My son does eggs and hamburger too!
    He is in a much warmer climate than I.
    Will be back for sure!!!
    Getting ready for DD's wedding so have been busy this winter. Wedding is in April!!!!! icon_biggrin.gif
    Dib's
    Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:23 am
    Food.com Groupie
    HotPepperRosemaryJelly wrote:
    Hi Molly!
    I am buying a new Excaliber. My son has one and he loves it. Will let you all know how I like it. Will be trying it out this summer.
    Won't start planting til the end of April in my part of the country.
    Have to see how it works. My son does eggs and hamburger too!
    He is in a much warmer climate than I.
    Will be back for sure!!!
    Getting ready for DD's wedding so have been busy this winter. Wedding is in April!!!!! icon_biggrin.gif


    Congrats on getting a new son! I have no doubt it will be a wonderful wedding!
    Molly53
    Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:35 am
    Forum Host
    SO nice to see you! wave.gif
    4Lolart
    Fri Mar 15, 2013 3:32 pm
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    I have a American Harvest® Dehydrator
    I don’t have any answers but I know with mine I
    rotate the tray every few hours depending on the
    thickness of the things I am dehydrating
    I try to make sure the thicker slices are on the same
    tray so they will all dry evenly.
    nolan_vode
    Tue Mar 19, 2013 8:01 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Hi

    I have been using a Nesco FD-80 700 watt Food Dehydrator for a while now.

    I think it's a very good product,

    Some of my suggestions will be repetitive of previous posts, but relevant I think since they will be based on trial and error using a similar Nesco product.

    Please excuse some of the obvious questions or observations.

    To me, the drying times you are experiencing seem exceptionally long, especially considering the tasks you have described and the relatively dry environment.

    Then again, considering all the variables, maybe not.

    I live in Southern California, so my environment when it comes to humidity is generally pretty moderate to dry.

    A good example from me would be that I can dry 6-8 pounds of beef, literally soaking wet from marinade, into beef jerky in 8-10 hours. If i remember correctly, that occupies 8-10 trays.

    But here's the catch, or a couple of catches.

    1) First, are you setting the thermostat at the proper temperature for the product you are drying

    whiskyandspice wrote:
    I think I'll load the Nesco that I have with all 12 trays and then just be patient.

    12 trays is a lot of trays for this unit. I'm not saying it won't work, but that's definitely a factor in the drying time.

    Never use more trays than necessary. If you need them all, fine, but if not, use the minimum.

    3) Bottom trays dry slower than upper trays.

    whiskyandspice wrote:
    there seems to be a kind of air circulation/temperature difference within the round trays of the Nesco machine.

    Absolutely correct and important to keep in mind.

    5) Drying time is also affected by crowding items on trays, The better the overall air flow throughout the unit, the quicker the drying time.

    6) So what does all this mean in a nutshell? The manufacturer will tell you that all you have to do is load the trays, set the thermostat and wait. The implication here is that the dehydrator will dry things evenly, regardless of which tray the items are placed upon, or the position of the item on the tray.

    However, that is often not the case.

    If you are looking for even, quick as possible drying, the bottom line is that, as much of a pain in the neck as it might be, you have to monitor what is happening over the course of the drying.

    When I make beef jerky, I am routinely rotating shelves from top to bottom to middle.

    I am turning the meat strips over, and rotating them from the edges of the trays to the middles and vice-versa. This also eliminates sticking.

    I eliminate trays when the meat strips shrink enough to allow me to combine the contents of several trays being used.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    My beef jerky example doesn't apply to all situations, of course, A lot of the whole process depends on how dry you want a particular item to get.

    Maybe with a substance you wanted extremely dry you could just "set it and forget it", I suppose, and just wait it out.

    I don't want to over dry my jerky,
    Braunda
    Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:28 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Hey 2 U!!! I have just started dehydrating. I am happy 2 see you are still here. Hugs 2 U!!
    Kitchen Witch Steph
    Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:52 am
    Food.com Groupie
    I agree! Soaked in salt water and dehydrated nuts are fantastic! I used to not think much about walnuts but now I love them on my oatmeal in the morning with a little date sugar and honey. Yum.

    I started doing it for health reasons (better digestion and absorption of nutrients with this method) following the instructions in Sally Fallon's book Nourishing Traditions. Instructions can be found at this link:
    http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2008/07/soaking-nuts.html

    Be careful with cashews, they have a very short soak time of about 6 hours. I ignored these instructions and ended up with rubbery and tasteless cashews. It's best to dehydrate at a higher temp of 200-250 degrees. My excalibur doesn't go that high so I have to switch to the oven for cashews.

    One of my favorite grill recipes with nuts is "Spicy Garlic Cashew Chicken" Company worthy and always a treat at our house.
    Maeven6
    Thu Jun 06, 2013 10:13 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Kitchen Witch Steph wrote:

    Be careful with cashews, they have a very short soak time of about 6 hours. I ignored these instructions and ended up with rubbery and tasteless cashews. It's best to dehydrate at a higher temp of 200-250 degrees. My excalibur doesn't go that high so I have to switch to the oven for cashews.

    One of my favorite grill recipes with nuts is "Spicy Garlic Cashew Chicken" Company worthy and always a treat at our house.


    Remember, cashews are NOT nuts. (Caps for emphasis only) Also, cashews have already been blanched so technically they are cooked to some degree, this is due to a federal law so there is not exception. Cashews do not have tanic acid like nuts so there is no need to soak them except for softening.

    The only time I soak cashews is to make cashew cream, milk, or a sauce because it helps in the pulverizing processing when making them but it is not necessary. In fact in your cashew chicken I would think it would be better not to soak the cashews as it puts extra water in the dish and can rob you of the cashew essence especially if you are soaking and then dehydrating.

    Just thoughts ... Macadamia nuts are another subject as well.

    Ber
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