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Anyone dehydrate spices?

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    Anyone dehydrate spices?

    Being bored I started looking at dehydrators for sale and that led to recipes for dehydrating things like onion, basil, garlic, etc.
    just curious if anyone has tried or has experience with doing this, if so is the quality of say onion powder better then store bought?
    Can I just use the oven to make stuff instead of buying a dehydrator?

    #2
    We smoke, dehydrate and grind our own peppers with fantastic results, haven't tried onion/garlic. I don't think an oven would give you the same results as dehydrators. Ovens don't typically run at the lower temps of a dehydrator, and dehydrators have a fan(s) to circulate the warm air. We typically air dry herbs like rosemary, thyme and basil on some old window screens.

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    • ComfortablyNumb
      ComfortablyNumb commented
      Editing a comment
      You are missing out. Get some sweet onions and garlic.

    • CaptainMike
      CaptainMike commented
      Editing a comment
      Yeah ComfortablyNumb I'm thinking the same thing. Should be pretty easy-peasy and oh so much better than the grocery store stuff.

    • ComfortablyNumb
      ComfortablyNumb commented
      Editing a comment
      Mrs CN puts the garlic or onion through the food processor then spreads it out on the tray. Comes off like a sheet of peanut brittle. Runs it through her blender to make a powder. Not only will it blow you away, you'll be wondering what that crap they sell in the stores is.

    #3
    My oven has a bread proof setting, so I can go to 100F. I’ve done herbs and tomatoes. I also have a toaster oven that has awesome convection that has worked for me in the past.

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    • Dewesq55
      Dewesq55 commented
      Editing a comment
      So does mine. It's called the Oven Light! 😁 Temp will get up around or above 100°F with the light on and the door closed. In fact, when I was making Tartine loaves on the regular and proofing them in the oven, I had to stick a folded up pot holder between the door and the frame to keep the temp below 90°F so as not to burn up all of the leavening.
      Last edited by Dewesq55; November 1, 2020, 06:51 PM.

    #4
    I raised onions and garlic at the other farm. There is no comparison between store bought and homemade, we won't even touch store bought. Mrs. CN likes to dehydrated tomatoes as well, then run them through the blender to make sauce. She is pushing me hard to get some garlic in the ground this year. I planted some sweet onions, most of which will be going into the dehydrator.

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      #5
      Oven temps vary a lot more than dehydrators. The last thing you want to do is overheat (aka cook) the food you're trying to dehydrate. Also I typically dehydrate at temps in the 115-135 F range (45-60 C), and a modern oven won't allow you to go that low. The lowest setting for my old stove was 145 F but my new one won't go lower than 170 F.

      I have dried apples, elderberries, onions, peppers, sweet corn, and tomatoes. I also use the dehydrator to incubate yogurt. Um, can't come up with anything else.

      I turn dehydrated onions into powder using a Blendtec blender. I like my onion powder better than store bought, because it smells and tastes sweet and mild yet more onion-y. A large box of onions dehydrates down to fit in a pint jar. I add about 1 TBL corn starch per cup of onion powder to reduce clumping and also store the onion powder in the freezer for even fewer clumps and better long-term flavor.

      I don't use a dehydrator to dry herbs like thyme and sage -- I prefer to hang small bundles of these herbs in a warmish spot in the house. They dry down fast and easy that way.

      My spouse was given an Excalibur dehydrator, which is why I have one to use. I'd probably not go out and buy one just for what little dehydrating I do, especially an Excalibur which is a very nice one, but spendy. It's fun and handy, but it's not a must-have for myself. I know other people who are really into making jerky and drying fruits and veggies. They can probably justify the cost of a dehydrator.

      Comment


      • klflowers
        klflowers commented
        Editing a comment
        Those are really nice. I wanted to buy one, but Sportsman's Warehouse had a LEM on sale for 50 bucks, so I went for it.

      • marshall
        marshall commented
        Editing a comment
        Thank you for the very helpful input😋

      • IowaGirl
        IowaGirl commented
        Editing a comment
        Hubs now has two other larger dehydrators he purchased for his elderberry business in addition to our elderly Excalibur (1970s vintage). He keeps lusting after the new Excaliburs, but he can get 3 new Cabellas dryers for the price of one Excalibur. And if you keep your eye on the used market, you can find gently used dryers for a good price. It's hard to justify an Excalibur unless you're drying marijuana or other high value stuff or if you've got money just burning a hole in your pocket.

      #6
      I have a dehydrator, and I always plan to dry something other than jerky, but every time I get it out, I seem to have an eye of round that is calling my name...
      Last edited by klflowers; October 4, 2020, 03:37 PM.

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        #7
        Yes yon can use your oven. Most ovens are dry heat.
        When you finish is your place going to smell as sweet?

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          #8
          I have a Waring Pro. Not alot of capacity but you can buy extra trays. I use it for tomatoes, herbs and peppers. CAUTION...Don't do Hot peppers inside as I found out.

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          • IowaGirl
            IowaGirl commented
            Editing a comment
            True that! I also don't care to dry onions inside due to the irritating, strong, lingering odor. I've heard warnings about drying mushrooms indoors as well -- 'rooms supposedly can trigger allergic reactions in some people.

          #9
          I do Chili's and a few herbs like rosemary, thyme, Basil and oregano.

          Comment


            #10
            Yes I dehydrate everything from green and red tomatoes, onions, smoked peppers, made black garlic, even lowly basil. The onions I spiralized and ate as a snack. Excalibur seems the most flexible.

            Comment


              #11
              I have had great results using either the dehydrate function on my oven or convection at the lowest possible temp. So far we've made quite a few batches of dried basil, peppermint for tea, garlic, red peppers, and onions.

              Comment


                #12
                One of the 5 functions of the Ninja Foodi is dehydrate. Haven't done that yet. Going to think about this and what to do, maybe
                fruits. Apple, orange, cranberry. Anyone do these?

                Comment


                • marshall
                  marshall commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Hey you just made me realize my air fryer has a dehydrate button! Thanks 👍🏼

                #13
                We dehydrate our chili peppers, tomatoes, bananas, pineapple, blueberries, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, basil, thyme, and chives. The first 5 in a cheap presto dehydrator. The rest sometimes in the dehydrator as well, but recently found that the microwave works better on the leafy herbs. Put a handful between two paper towel sheets or paper plates and mic on high 30 seconds at a time until the desired degree of dryness is achieved. The mic retains better color and flavor without over drying.

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