Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Fruit Leathers

I thought that since Meijer has strawberries on sale for $1.00 a pound, this would be a good post for this week.

Who doesn't love a fruit roll-up?? Yummy goodness that you can carry around and chew... mmmm. I decided to try my hand at making some fruit leathers since the "good" ones are so expensive!! It's funny that the fewer ingredients a product has, the more expensive it is! Now why is that? Wouldn't you think the opposite, like when you see a huge paragraph of ingredients that the product should then cost you a lot of money? Ok so that's not the case. Well anyway, I bought 10lbs of strawberries and a bag of apples (or 10 small apples, I do one apple per lb of strawberries).


So here's my strawberry fruit leather recipe:

10lbs strawberries
10apples
3/4-1 1/2 cup honey (use whatever sweetener you want, I use honey to taste. just remember not to get it too sweet because they'll sweeten as they dry)

I added the apples to help add sweetness and texture. One apple per pound. That sounded good to me. I cored/peeled/sliced the apples and washed and trimmed the strawberries. I then cooked them down until they were nice and soft then transferred them to my food processor (add honey to your taste). Zip, zip, zip, till they were liquefied. Line a jelly roll pan or a baking sheet with saran wrap or wax paper. You want some to hang over the edges a tad bit. Now set your oven to the lowest temperature and stick 'er in the oven. I let mine dry for about 12 hours. Three lbs will yield about 2 trays worth. You want the mixture to be about 1/16"-1/8" thick. Check it every few hours. It will be shiny on top and not wet when done.

So there you have it. Simple, easy, and very healthy fruit roll-ups. One tray for me gave me about 40ish 2"x4" strips. It was hard to keep count since we kept nibbling on them :)
Ten lbs should yield 200-250 fruit strips.

my cost break down is:
strawberries $10.00
organic apples $ 4.00
raw honey $1.60
total cost for approx 225 fruit strips =$15.60 or $.07 each

Since this is such a good deal this week I'm planning on buying another 10lbs and doing almost all of this again... this time, instead of drying it, I'm going to put it in gallon size ziplocks and freeze it until I'm ready to dry it. Hope you give it a try!!


*Apple ones are even easier by using just apples or dehydrating your favorite applesauce!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Homemade Nutrigrain Bars *For Emily :)

I found this recipe one day while scouring the internet for a recipe for something similar to a Nutrigrain Bar. Everyone here loves them so it's a keeper for us, maybe it will be for you too!

Fruit and Grain Bars (posted by BaylorMom @ titus2.com)
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cup oats
16oz jar strawberry or other preserves (I've found that the 11oz jar I buy is plenty)
1 teaspoon almond extract

Cream butter and sugar. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Add almond extract. Press 1/2 into the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Spread preserves on top and finish with remaining crumb mixture. Press down. Bake @ 350 for 20-25 min and let cool completely before cutting into bars.