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Dehydrated apples are a type of dried fruit. Dried or dehydrated apples typically can be softened in water. Soaking them in water for a few minutes can add moisture and allow the dried apples to be used in recipes in the same manner as fresh apples. Dehydrated apples can be stored in airtight jars or kept in the freezer.
There are several different methods of making dehydrated apples. The apple peel may be removed or left on. Many people like to remove the peels as they find that the dried fruit is not as tough. Once the apples are washed, cored, and sliced, they usually need to be treated with something that will help them retain their vitamins and coloration during the drying process.
Water is often mixed with a granular form of ascorbic acid, which is vitamin C. This solution helps lock in the color and nutrients of the fruit. Product instructions typically should be followed. Lemon juice can be used as an alternative to ascorbic acid, but its color retention is not as effective.
Once the apples are prepared, they can be dehydrated in a food dehydrator or a regular oven. Dehydrated apples and other fruits can also be produced by leaving the fruit or food out in the sun during extremely hot weather. This process may take up to five days; the food typically needs to be taken indoors each evening. To avoid contamination from insects, sun-dried food must always be well-covered. Freezing sun dehydrated apples, and other foods dried this way, is recommended since extremely cold temperatures can kill the bacteria produced by insects.
Most electric dehydrators have various trays in which food that is to be dried can be placed. The foods should be spread out rather than crowded in the trays or the fruit or other food will end up too moist. Properly dehydrated apples should not be moist as this can permit the growth of mold. As an alternative to dehydrating apple slices in an electric food dehydrator, a kitchen oven on low temperature may be used. The apple slices should be spread out on cookie sheets and the oven door should be left open to reduce moisture.
Dehydrated apples can be stored for up to one year in the freezer or in airtight containers. Soaking the apples in warm water softens them so that they can be used as a fresh apple substitute in pies and other desserts. Dehydrated apple slices may also be served as a snack with a caramel dipping sauce or peanut butter.
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