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I love growing my own food. Part of growing all the food is not only eating it fresh in the summer, but preserving it for winter use. We were blessed with 2 pear trees on our property when we moved. You’d better believe I figured out how to use them! A favorite snack for the winter time is dehydrated pear slices. It is fairly simple and an easy snack when pears are no longer ripe!
You will need:
Cutting board and knife (works best. I’ve tried a slicer, but the pears are usually too soft).
Step 1: Pick the pears while they are still green on the tree. This saves bruising when they fall off, and allows you to get the pears instead of the squirrels eating them all half way. Take them to a cool dark area and lay them out. I usually use an old sheet or boxes in the basement. Check on them every few days for those that are ripe. Mine turn from green to slightly yellow.
Step 2: Once 6-12 are ripe that you (haven’t eaten), gently wash them up in the sink removing any bad spots.
Step 3: Slice the pears thin and even. I don’t take the time to peel the pears, but you can if you don’t like them.
Step 4: If you don’t want the pears to brown, dip them in citric acid/lemon juice. I don’t mind them browning a bit, so I skip this part.
Step 5: Lay the sliced pears out on a dehydrating tray. You can buy add on trays for most dehydrators so you can do more at once.
Step 6: Once all the trays are full, put the lid on the dehydrator and set the temperature for 135 degrees F.
Step 7: My pears usually take around 12-24 hours depending on how thick I sliced them. If you start it at night, check them in the morning and adjust depending on how they look. I typically leave a little juice in mine as they are easier for small kids to chew that way.
Step 8: Remove pears from the dehydrator and place in freezer containers. Label and freeze. I do this because I leave some juice in them and then they last for an entire year without molding.
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