Fruit Leather. Say what?
What do you think it is? I had some idea- as a child I ate those sugary yum fruit roll ups as often as I could. But this is the healthy, grown up version. Its simple and delicious and I wish I’d thought to make it before now!
What you’ll need:
Here’s where it varies. You can use whatever fruit you have on hand, anything that is about to turn or anything frozen. In this example, we’ll go with frozen organic blueberries because that’s what I used.
So: 2 boxes of frozen blueberries
1 Tablespoon of honey of your choice (I’m trying to keep my sugar intake low but you could use sugar)
What to do:
Put both boxes of berries in a large pan, I used my wok and it worked brilliantly.
Medium heat, stir occasionally when it starts reducing. Add honey. Stir some more. You get the idea. According to my fruit leather expert friend, when its ready it should be the consistency of applesauce. Nice and thick. Also, I smashed down most of my berries with a fork during the cooking process.
Grab some parchment paper or one of those fancy silicone baking pads and lay it on your baking dish, spreading it out with a spatula or spoon. If you use parchment paper as I did you’ll want to cut the edges down so they don’t fall over and stop your fruit from drying out completely.
Note: After I took this photo, I cut the sides down.
Turn your oven on as low as it can go and set it inside for anywhere from 6 to 8 hours. You are basically drying out the fruit, taking the moisture out so it lasts longer. If you have a dehydrator, I’m jealous. If you’re in a hostel or guest house or all you have is a toaster oven….use that! Just put the temperature really really low. Any low heat will do.
Keep an eye on it, it won’t burn but you don’t want it to dry out too much and become too tough. Mine took about 7 1/2 hours.
I read a bunch of articles online that said if the fruit leather was too sticky, it wasn’t ready. Apparently this is not always true. Mine still had some stickiness to it, and it was perfect.
Once you pull out your fruit leather, place it on a drying rack to cool. You can then cut it into strips and roll it up with plastic wrap.
I had a sample piece that I chewed while eating this yogurt. Absolute heaven.
I used an 8×11 baking dish however depending on how much fruit you have you can use something smaller. I’m going to pick some wild blackberries and experiment with some orange juice. This is so healthy and a great snack for camping, which is the reason I made it, so I could take it with me on my Tasmanian road trip.
*Warning: If you eat one, you will get addicted and you’ll have to force yourself to stop before you eat the whole thing!
My fruit leather went into the fridge, but you could store it in a mason jar out of direct sunlight. It does not have to be refrigerated.
Questions? New combinations for me to try? What are your favorite kinds of fruit leather?