Fruit Leather

2 Oct

One of the local grocery stores was selling flats of strawberries for $3.88 – that’s 8 of those little containers (I should know the volume, but I don’t) for less than $4!! Couldn’t pass that up! But I also couldn’t eat all of them before they went bad. 🙂 So, we opted to try to make our own fruit leather. I was frustrated at first because I couldn’t find a recipe with real instructions. They are all kind of like, “add some fruit, add some sweetener, add whatever flavor you want…” I’m not good at making things up. I need a recipe unless I’ve been making it for at least ten years – these are the rules. However, it turns out that there just isn’t a concrete recipe for fruit leather. You have to be a little flexible. Deep breath.

I made a strawberry batch and a strawberry banana batch – both were really good. I just got some raspberries and peaches and I’m going to try a few more concoctions…no recipe and all. I’m so brave. I was planning on using these for my daughter’s lunches and after-school snacks, but my husband took most of them to work with him for his snacks. 🙂 That works too!

photo-183

Ingredients:

2 1/2 – 3 cups fruit, diced

2 tsp lemon juice

spices and/or extracts to taste (optional)

honey, sugar, or agave to taste

Preheat oven to lowest temperature (mine is 170^F). Line a baking sheet with plastic wrap of silicone baking mat (don’t use foil or waxed paper). The plastic wrap will shrink in the oven, so leave the edges loose.

Puree fruit and lemon juice in a food processor or blender until smooth. Add sweetener to taste and any other spices/extracts you desire. Pour onto prepared baking sheet and spread as evenly as possible to about 1/4 inch thick (the puree will shrink a little so don’t spread it all the way to the edges). Place in oven and bake 6-8 hours or until center is not tacky. Remove from oven, let cool to room temperature, and peel off baking sheet. Cut into strips and roll in wax paper or plastic wrap. Store in air-tight container.

*Tip: If your fruit leather comes out too hard and cracks instead of peeling off of your cooking sheet, brush it with water then return it to the oven for another 10 min or so – it will soften right up!

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