How To Choose The Right Food Dehydrator?

July 15, 2017 No Comment

People have been dehydrating food for millennia to preserve it. The usual way of dehydrating food is to put it under direct sunlight for hours. There are some risks of this method, ranging from inclement weather to unwanted bug infestation. Today, we can do the task easily using various modern equipment, such as food dehydrators. Of course, not all dehydrators are made equal and they vary quite widely. There are factors that you should know when choosing food dehydrator. A good dehydrator should have great and unimpeded airflow from one end to another. Air should flow directly from the heat source through the food container. The flow can be based on convection or driven by fan. One big question is whether we should choose a horizontal flow box or vertical flow cylindrical unit. It is often believed that the horizontal model is a better choice. It’s because that air flows more evenly through the slices of food when we use the horizontal unit.

When using vertical dehydrator, the air flow tends to become less effective once it reaches the top of the stack. It means that we need to swap the position of the food slices to ensure even dehydration process. This will require an extra work, although proper dehydration can still be achieved. Regardless the type, a dehydrator should be able to dehydrate the food to an appropriate level. A dehydrator should work well for herbs, vegetables and water-rich fruits. However, when the food is particularly wet and has high water content, it is important that we can maintain air flow a bit more aggressively. Dehydrators should also work well for making jerky from wet meat, but it is important to be aware that we shouldn’t do it alternately. After making jerky, we should clean the dehydrator properly, before we start drying fruits and vegetables. Without this, your dried fruits and vegetables may taste rather weird.

We should be able to clean the dehydrator easily, just like any equipment in the kitchen. Cleaning is an inevitable chore and once we do that, it is important that we are able to complete it as soon as possible. Many dehydrator models should be relatively easy to clean, but it’s better to choose the one that’s very easy to clean. The washable plastic component may not need any cleaning liquid, except when it gets greasy after drying meat with relatively higher fat content, such as cold water fishes. As pieces and bits accumulate at the bottom of the dehydrator, we may clean up with a damp rag. It is important that the heating unique is always kept clean from pieces if food. If your dehydrator unit uses wax sheets on the tray, it’s a good idea to discard after each use. After drying pieces of meat, you should make sure that the interior of the unit isn’t greasy. If it’s greasy, use mild soapy water to clean it up. Bits of food can cause bacteria to multiply and contaminate the next batch of dehydrated food.

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