We’ve got a lot of delicious, crispy, dried apples in the pantry to enjoy this fall and winter. How they got to this ideal snap-crisp state was a happy accident that’ll be easy for you to repeat, on purpose.
My new neighbor gave us several pounds of apples from her orchard, which I put into our dehydrator intentionally. I cored and sliced the apples about 1/4″ thick, spread them in single layers on the drying sheets, set the machine to 135F for fruit, checked the relative humidity (about 50%), and anticipated the slices would be leathery and ready to store in about 9-12 hours.
What I didn’t count on was eating a bad oyster a few hours later.
Yeah, that happened, and I was a curled up bundle of misery for about 24 hours. Checking my dehydrator in the garage was the last thing on my aching mind.
When I stopped feeling like I was on death’s door, I remembered the apples — about 30 hours after they had gone into the machine — I asked my husband-nurse to please remove them from the machine. I didn’t even bother to check how dry they were. I was so sick I barely cared what came out of the machine.
Lucky us — we got perfectly crisp apple chips!
Got apples? Try my new favorite dehydration method described above, but just don’t eat the oyster. Really, just don’t.
(Fruit left in the dehydrator on too high a setting or for too long can turn out so dried it’s tough to chew. It goes beyond snappy and into a soak-before-you-eat-it state. It doesn’t go bad. It’s just a little less pleasant to eat. So start with the recommended settings for your particular machine, but don’t fear going just a little longer to get beyond the leathery apple state and into the apple chip realm of tasty, home preserved snacks.)