Saturday, September 29, 2012


We're visiting relatives in eastern Kansas right now, and the humidity is much greater than it is at home.  It's been a reminder to me that open-air dehydrating isn't as easy an option for many people as we're used to.

At home I can set a tray of chopped onions on the kitchen table and the next day they're dry enough to pack up.  Same with peppers, olives, and many other fruits or veggies and herbs. 

Some, like strawberry slices, take longer even in our climate and I speed it up by putting them in the oven where the pilot light helps dry them faster.

But I realize now that I'm quite spoiled by how easy most things are to dehydrate in our dry climate.  If I lived in a place like where we're visiting I'd most likely have to use an electric dehydrator to do most of my dehydrating.

We did get one tip earlier on this blog about placing herbs like mint in paper sacks for dehydrating.  Does anyone have other tips for dehydrating food in humid climates?

I've heard of methods used by native Americans in the 'old days' where they hung food around fires, but is that truly dehydrating, or smoking, for preservation?  Or both?


  1. You can use your oven for dehydration if you put it on the lowest setting.

    It's not as cost effective as using a dehydrator in the long-term, as ovens use more energy, but it's cheaper in the short-term because purchasing a dehydrator is expensive. It also requires keeping a closer eye on it.

  2. Thank you Faye,
    I have already put my dehydrator to bed and I find that I have celery forgotten in the fridge that must be dried or thrown away. Throwing it away would make me sad.