Summer has arrived, and so has an abundance of fruit! I am so excited to be preserving fruit from our land for the coming winter months. We have collected rhubarb and strawberries and wanted to preserve what we’re unable to eat fresh. I have been freezing berries whole and unwashed, so they don’t stick together. I tried my hand at slicing the berries and drying them. This was good, but I like making fruit leathers with apple added in to ‘stretch’ the berries further. Although apples are out of season currently where we live, I went to a local orchard who was clearing out their crop from last year that have been stored all winter – apples perfect for drying. I was able to get two bushels of Ida Red apples for $15 CAD!
Here is what I did for our Strawberry Rhubarb Apple Fruit Leather:
4 cups coarsely chopped rhubarb
8 cups strawberries, hulls removed
12 cups apples (I used 15, cores removed but left the skin on)
In batches, blend all the ingredients in a food processor. Combine in a large bowl. Spoon onto teflon sheets, being sure to make the outer edges slightly thicker to help with consistent drying. Turn dehydrator on to 145˚ for approximately 45 minutes. Reduce temperature to 115˚ and leave running over night. The taste is delicious with no need for added sweeteners!