I’ve been talking about my pick eater for several years now. You’ll be happy to know we’re about to go to Food Therapy, so I’ll keep you updated on that. One of the few healthy snacks she loves is dehydrated fruits and veggies. She loves the crunch and taste. I was previously heading to whole foods and spending $7 on a tiny tub of strawberries and bananas. It was so small that she was eating one bin of them at a time. Needless to say, I was wasting a lot of money and making a certain company very successful. I did my research to see how hard it would be to make my own dehydrated fruits and veggies. I came across the company Excalibur, who is the industry leader for dehydrators. In less than a years time (maybe 6 months) I was spending as much buying tiny one-serving containers of dehydrated snacks for what the price of one dehydrator cost. Crazy!
Let me tell you about all the things an Excalibur dehydrator can do. Because I know that I didn’t realize all the things it did! You can dry fruits, vegetables, herbs, cake decorations, craft projects, nuts, grains, meats, fish, yogurt, beef jerky and can raise bread. I have to say that I’m pretty excited to dry herbs from my garden this year, especially lavender, but I’ll be making some beef jerky too! Excalibur sells spices and supplies to make beef jerky. I’ve been known to polish off a bag of jerky in under 5 minutes. In fact I polished off two today. Not proud of that fact, but it’s true. I love that we can choose how much we dehydrate items. For example some companies dry apples until their crisp, other times you find them still chewy. Simply dry them to the consistency that you like! Made to order consistency. LOVE!
I have been using Excalibur’s 5-Tray Small Garden 26 hour timer dehydrator and it’s plenty big for our family. In fact, my daughter loves the freshly dried fruits (now she prefers them over store-bought) so much that we end up purchasing two bundles of bananas at the store every time we dry fruits. I can fit two bundles of bananas on usually three trays. One thing I did learn is that what you dry together can sometimes mix flavors. This usually works in our favor when I do an assortment of apples, bananas, strawberries and kiwi. They blend well together and my daughter enjoys them that much more. I probably wouldn’t mix any veggies with the fruits though. I’d do them in two separate batches. I’m pretty much obsessed with Excalibur’s book Preserve It Naturally as well. The book breaks down by chapters how to dehydrate fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, herbs, nuts, grains, dairy products, crafts, cake decorating, potpourri, sachets, macrame beads, dough art, wreaths, raw and living foods and much more. It also gives you recipes for raw foods, hot/cold appetizers, soups, salads, main/side dishes, sauces, beverages, desserts, snacks, trail mixes, breads, and more. Remember those Brad’s Raw Chips we told you about months ago? Healthy, crunchy chips made from raw vegetables? Well now you can make them yourself!
Head over to Excalibur here and look at their recipes, how dehydrating and eating Raw foods can benefit you and the rest of your family. Imagine dried foods without preservatives and added sugars? Almost all of their dehydrators are currently on sale. What a great way to start off 2011 in a healthy way. Get a dehydrator for your family and make dried fruits, veggies and jerky the healthy go-to snacks versus greasy chips and items filled with preservatives. Teach your kids at a young age how delicious healthy fruits and veggies can be as snacks and you’ll give them a gift of healthy living that will last forever. This Excalibur dehydrator is by far one of my favorite items I’ve ever written about for ITKM. It’s truly an exceptional item.
Special thanks to Excalibur for providing a sample for review purposes.