Drying Food Preservation Method
The drying food preservation method is easy to do, very safe, and can be used for most types of foods (meats, fruits, and vegetables ).Once the fruit or vegetable is harvested, it is prepared for drying. Preparation includes removing stems, peeling, cutting, and slicing. It also provides coring, seeding, pitting, and stemming. The food must be pretreated before it can be dried. This pretreatment often involves dipping the food into boiling water or blanching in steam.
After preparation, the food is then ready to be dried. The temperature and humidity level of the drying chamber can significantly affect how long it takes to dry certain foods. For example, foods with a higher moisture content might need to be placed in an environment at a lower temperature and humidity than other types of foods with less moisture.
Also, different foods might be placed in the same drying chamber simultaneously. This may lead to differences in food quality due to their differences in gathering moisture during the gathering process.
Hygiene is essential when working with fruits and vegetables because harmful bacteria can grow on wet surfaces. If these bacteria are not removed, they will develop into the mold when the food is dried. Cleaning and sanitizing are necessary before and during the drying process.
Many different types of food can be dried: vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, meat, and seafood. Vegetables such as garlic and peppers can be prepared in various ways before they are dried. Depending on the type of vegetable, they can be left whole or sliced.
They can be heated in boiling water before drying. Or, vegetables could be shredded before being dried to make them easier to rehydrate after processing. Some vegetables are also blanched by steaming them for a short period before drying.
Depending on the type of fruit, it may be peeled, cored, or seeded before drying. Some fruits are sliced after preparation, while others are dried whole.
Meat and seafood must be pretreated before they are dried. Meat is usually salt-cured, brined, or rinsed with vinegar to kill bacteria before being dried. Brining is a saltwater bath in which the meat is submerged in a solution of salt and water for a few hours or overnight.
Fresh seafood can be dried whole after washing with salt water to reduce slime. Drying fresh seafood may cause an off-taste from oxidation. However, this taste can be greatly reduced by soaking or blanching the seafood in water with salt, sugar, or citric acid.
Dried fruits can be further divided into three categories: whole, cut, and slice. Whole dried fruits are just that; dried whole without any tampering. Cut fruits are prepared by slicing them before drying. After preparation, they tend to dry much more quickly than whole fruits. Slices are prepared by slicing the fruit into uniform thickness before drying. This allows more of the moisture inside of the fruit to evaporate, so they dry faster than whole or cut fruit.
Packaging is the final stage of the drying process. If dried fruits and vegetables are kept at room temperature, they can be packaged by placing them into resalable plastic bags or containers with lids. If fruit and vegetable pieces are not served as such, they should be placed in a container that allows the air to circulate inside.
Drying times can vary depending on the type of food being dried. For example, fruit generally dries faster than vegetables because they have a much higher moisture content. During the drying process, foods can require frequent stirring and rotation to dry evenly and do not stick together or become moldy.
Depending on the type of fruit, it may be peeled, cored, or seeded before drying. Some fruits are sliced after preparation, while others are dried whole. Meat and seafood must be pretreated before they are dried. Meat is usually salt-cured, brined, or rinsed with vinegar to kill bacteria before being dried. Brining is a saltwater bath in which the meat is submerged in a solution of salt and water for a few hours or overnight.