Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Apricot ears

Our apricots are done; my sister-in-law’s are not.

I dried apricots; my sister-in-law is borrowing our food dehydrator so she can dry her apricots.

I am posting about dried apricots so that my sister-in-law will know what to do; I am posting about dried apricots so I will remember how to do it next year because it is my custom to forget everything I ever learned. And then some.

I hope I remember, come next apricot season, to check the blog.


Dried apricots are good. Chewy, sour, sweet. My uncle calls them “ears.” They’re kind of ugly, but so is a bunch of other food, though I can’t think of any examples at present. Besides, aesthetics are overrated. It all goes to mush in the belly anyway.

Drying Apricots

Tear washed apricots in half and remove the pit.

Flatten the apricot, pushing up on the curved part with your thumb and pushing down on the cut part with your fingers. Come, I’ll show you.

Get in position...


Smoosh.


Thanks, hon, for taking the pictures. It tested your patience mightily, I know, but you hung in there and clicked the camera five whole times, only two of which weren’t fuzzy. You’re the best.


And speaking of “hon.” Last night Mr. Handsome and I were in the kitchen when in ran The Baby Nickel. He started rummaging in one of the drawers in search of a cup. I asked, “What are you guys doing?”

“Playing Honey.”

“Huh?” Mr. Handsome and I asked in unison.

He stopped digging long enough to turn his head toward us and then, speaking slowly and clearly, he rephrased his answer: “We’re playing Mother and Father.”

Back to the apricots. Lay the apricots peel-side down on the trays.


Dry till pliable but no longer juicy-wet, about 10-12 hours in my dehydrator.


Pack the wrinkly ears into jars and freeze.


One of my dehydrator loads yields three-plus quarts, stuffed.

And since I'm on the subject of apricots, let me tell you what else we did with them.

*Sweet and sour jam.

*Cook jam.

*Freezer jam FAIL.


*Canned apricots: firm-ripe 'cots torn in half and put in a jar (not even all pretty like you're supposed to) and then smacked down tight by banging the jar on a wadded up towel, plus 1/4 cup sugar and some water, and then processed for five minutes (bring canner's water to a slow boil and then boil very gently for five minutes cause you don't want the apricots to turn to mush).


*Canned apricot puree: all the apricots that are no longer firm (but not rotted), torn in half and pitted and then smooooooshed into jars with a fork and canned for ten minutes at a medium boil. No need to add sugar or water. Upon opening the jars, I'll blender them up real good and then thicken the sauce with sugar and Therm Flo. The resulting apricot puree is super rich. We'll eat it over ice cream, in smoothies, or I'll use it as the filling for these bars.

About one year ago: Red Beet Greens. I have next to no red beets in the garden this year. I'm sad.
About two years ago: What my kids look like when they drink soda.

5 comments:

  1. Playing "honey!" How cute.

    I had a peach jam FAIL last year. The good thing about jam FAILs is that it often means syrup success! ;)

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  2. I love that - "playing honey." Darling!

    Do you need to freeze the apricots after you've dried them?

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  3. Lynn, You're not supposed to have to freeze dried fruits but I do because I'm paranoid. I'm afraid that there might be too much moisture in a few and that they'd go rancid and ruin the whole batch. I just don't want to risk it. I don't freeze dried apples, though, and they do just fine.

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  4. I have been wanting to get a dehydrator. Those look really good!

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  5. Interesting pictures. Love to see this blog. Thanks for giving useful info about Apricot puree

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