I'm here. I'm healthy. I'm busy!
This week I've been working on baby quilts. I need them in February/March so I thought I'd better get moving!
We are also planning a trip in late spring and early summer. Looks like we'll finally get to Banff, Alberta, Glacier National Park, and the Oregon coast. We both spend hours looking at places to rent (me) and places to see and photograph (Ray).
I've been quilting but I have no finishes to show you although five of the seven, yes FIVE, of the twin-size quilt tops are finished!
|A peek at numbers 4 and 5|
|Blocks from 2 of the 3 quilts.|
But mostly I've been experimenting.
Marlene over at StitchinByTheLake was talking about dehydrators. I'm not sure why but something clicked - I need to learn to dehydrate things! I own a very old Ronco dehydrator - it has a bottom fan. I used to use it to make the best beef jerky (yes, the best - ask my kids!). It wasn't exactly calorie-free so I pretty much quit making it when the boys left home. I also dried apple slices. I recently learned (from Marlene and others) that dehydrated food keeps for years and does not require freezer space.
|Our 1990's Ronco dehydrator|
Rational in no particular order:
- My freezer is full - I need other storage OR another freezer.
- I'm tired of wasting food - example: I never use the whole bag of potatoes and I'm tired of throwing out the rotten ones. I could just dehydrate the extra ones.
- I'd love to save money - We eat LOTS of fruit and vegetables. If I could buy in season and dehydrate, I could buy at the best prices and have food for months. Or I could have a garden and dehydrate the surplus.
- I would always have certain things on hand if I dehydrated vegetables. Don't you hate getting ready to fix something and not having an onion?
- When we travel, I could carry produce with us without the need for cooler space. (We often stay places where we can cook.)
- There's more I'm sure but that's all I can think of for now!
I continue to research dehydrating foods. I am now dehydrating various vegetables to see how this all works. I have done the following.
- purchased frozen hashbrowns (straight from the freezer)
- sliced potatoes (cooked first but not cooled)
- carrots (raw)
- carrots (blanched first but not cooled)
- celery (raw)
- cauliflower (blanched but not cooled)
- onions (raw)
- onions (cooked but not cooled)
|My current stash of dehydrated vegetables.|
This does take time. Of course, I can do other things like quilt while the drying is taking place. I've pretty much dehydrated each vegetable separately. There are many more to try but I just need to get a handle on all of this so I've only used vegetables I have on hand.
Next on the agenda is to rehydrate and use these vegetables. I plan to do that tomorrow and make potato soup.
Then it's on to fruit. I think blueberries are first on the list.
Let me know if you dehydrate. I'd love to hear about your resources. If this all works, and I have great faith that it will, I'll be looking at a new dehydrator with a side fan and a temperature setting.