Raisins from Grapes in a Food DryerAuthor: Daniel Gasteiger | Category: dry fruit
Have you used your food dryer to make raisins out of grapes? Try it! Store-bought raisins are tasty and all that, but homemade raisins put the store-bought ones to shame. I expect never to buy commercially-packaged raisins again now that I’ve made my own. Whenever I anticipate wanting raising for cooking, baking, or salads, I load up my dehydrator and let it do its magic.
Making Your Own Raisins
I use only seedless grapes when I make raisins. I can’t imagine trying to remove seeds from grapes, and there’s no way I want to bite into a raisin that has a woody center.
Which reminds me of something I despise about commercial raisins: many of them have dehydrated stem stubs still attached; I pick through commercial raisins and tear off those stem remnants before I incorporate commercial raisins in my dishes. Happily, when I make my own raisins, I can pick through the grapes and make sure none have stems attached before the grapes go into the dehydrator.
One other thought: grapes skins are impressive water barriers. I stab each grape in at least 2 places to provide places for water to escape from the grapes in the dehydrator. While you don’t have to stab your grapes, I’m convinced they dry a bit faster when you do. In any case, at 135 degrees Fahrenheit, it can take 10, 20, even 30 hours to dehydrate grapes into raisins. Check on them after 10 hours, and, perhaps, every two hours after that until they’re shriveled, pliable, and chewy. Raisins from my food dryer are always plumper than commercial raisins, and they taste much, much better.