I came home to two large boxes on my front porch last week. One turned out to be for a student who was moving back to town and didn't have her permanent address yet and was borrowing mine. The other box, though, was all for me and full of delicious goodies!
When I brought my latest Kauffmans' fruit box into the kitchen and opened it, the first thought I had was about how long it was take me to eat all those delicious peaches. Then, I decided that option wouldn't made for a very good blog post, and it might make my stomach hurt. I used my amazing powers of restraint and decided to research what kind of yummy treats I could make instead.
|This box contained eight peaches, 16 plums, 8 Ginger Gold apples, and 8 Summer Rambo apples. For my recipe I decided to use peaches and apples.|
I came across something I've been wanting to try for a while and decided that this would be the perfect time to go for it. My kids pack lunches for school most days. I'm lucky in that they don't typically complain about what's in their lunch boxes and they don't insist on much variety. They usually have a few slices of deli meat, some cheese, a fruit and a veggie. All of those are pretty easy to pack, except for the fruit. Whole fruit doesn't fit in their lunch boxes very well and isn't easy enough to eat, but cut fruit doesn't often look good after sitting in a lunch box.
Enter fruit leather. Fruit leather is a form of dried fruit made with minimal ingredients and minimal processing. It's a great way to preserve fruit and have it for easy consumption later.
To make this fruit leather I peeled and sliced four peaches and one Ginger Gold apple. I placed them in a pot with about 1 cup of water. Some recipes call for sugar or honey, but these fruits were sweet enough on their own. I turned the pot on a low heat and waited while the fruit broke down and became soft. Then my lovely assistant mashed the fruit with a potato masher.
Continue cooking the fruit until most of the water has boiled away. Then add it to your food processor or blender to make a very smooth puree. Pour this puree onto a lined baking sheet. I lined mine with parchment paper, but you can use wax paper or plastic wrap as well. Spread the puree around so that it fills the baking sheet evenly. Place the baking sheet in the oven on the lowest heat setting available (150ish). This will take about 8-12 hours. Don't rush it, but check on it frequently.