Dehydrator basics & granola
On an average day, I tend to have way more recipe ideas in my head than I do time or oven space. I’m grateful for my own kitchen and my double oven, but that still doesn’t seem to be enough.
Hello, pretty thing, you are big and bulky but oh so useful.
She’s even got a power and temperature control.
And five large trays.
Dehydrators are the raw foodist’s version of an oven. The appliances gently blow warm air over food, causing it to lose its own moisture and dry out. This process can take anywhere from hours to days, depending on what you’re making.
This may seem like too long of a process to be worthwhile, yet dehydrating enables you to attain a wider variety of ways you can make food in raw form. From crackers and breads, to pizza, granola and dried fruit, it creates endless possibilities with flavours, textures and storage options. A whole new world opens up when you start making things and experimenting.
This practical piece of equipment will allow me to do much more than my previous round dehydrator, and I can’t wait to get started. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to share a few of my favourite dehydrator recipes and uses for vegetarians, vegans and, of course, raw foodists, too. Whether you’re looking for some tasty snacks, to experiment with raw food cuisine or to just preserve some fruit, there’s so much you can do with a dehydrator at home.
While we’re on the subject of food (because that’s what this blog is all about, really), I’d like to draw your attention to a story I wrote for a website that is appropriately named Stop Chasing Skinny. I haven’t written much about my personal history here on ADC—because I’d much rather focus on things that make me happy—but when JL contacted me recently to ask if I’d be interested in sharing my story, I thought it was a good opportunity to write about a part of my life I don’t talk about much anymore, even though it was a huge part of my life at one time. Anyway, if you’re interested, you can read it here.
Without further ado, here’s one of my favourite dehydrator snacks—granola. It’s just a matter of mixing a few ingredients together, spreading it out on a dehydrator tray and letting the dehydrator do its magic!
Nut-free, go-to granola
Yield: about 3 cups
- 1 1/2 cups raw oat flakes (use certified gluten-free, if necessary)
- 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1/4 cup raw sesame seeds
- 1/4 cup raw buckwheat groats
- 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon
- dash of nutmeg
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, combine the oats, sunflower seeds, coconut, sesame seeds, buckwheat groats, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
- Add the maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla and stir to cover all the dry ingredients.
- Spread the mixture out on a teflex sheet on a dehydrator tray and dehydrate at 110F for about 4 hours or until desired crunch is achieved. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer to preserve freshness.