White Peach and Lemon Fruit Leather

Summer, Sweet Recipes • 19 Sep 2011

As summer unfurls into fall, home cooks all over the four-seasoned states rush to capture and preserve the taste and feel of warmer months by pickling, saucing and drying fruits and vegetables. Although I missed the boat on canning heirloom tomatoes and jamming stone fruits, I made a few batches of fruit leather, a less-enduring method of preservation.

Though it doesn’t last as long as its canned counterparts, fruit leather is an attempt to briefly immortalize short-lived fruit. It is also a throwback to childhood, and nostalgia flows like water every autumn.

Like canning, fruit leather doesn’t capture the freshness of fruit, though it does bottle, so to speak, the bounty to savor during the cold, bleak months. And it can last for weeks, even months, if properly packaged.

There are several methods to make fruit leather. You can use a dehydrating machine or an oven set to low temperature. You can cook the fruit prior to dehydration or simply puree raw fruit and dehydrate.

When making fruit leather, pick your fruit or vegetable at its peak. The finished product delivers more of a punch than fresh fruit, so make sure to account for changes in sweetness, tartness and acidity when adding flavor enhancers such as lemon or honey.

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White Peach and Lemon Fruit Leather
4 ripe white peaches, skin on (should yield 4 cups diced fruit)
1 tablespoon good honey (if needed, depending on sweetness of fruit)
2 tablespoons lemon juice, or to taste

1. Preheat oven to 140- 150 degrees.

2. Wash the peaches thoroughly. Remove pits and chop roughly. Put peaches, honey and lemon juice in blender and puree until smooth and slightly frothy. Taste the puree and adjust for sweetness or tartness.

3. Wait until the froth subsides and pour the puree onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Spread with a spatula making sure the puree is even, about 1/4 inch thick.

4. Bake for 8-12 hours until dry and no longer sticky. Cooking times vary depending on juiciness of the fruit.

5. Cool at room temperature for several hours until the fruit leather softens.

6. Cut into strips and store in either parchment or plastic wrap, rolling each sheet tightly. Place in an air-tight container and store in a dry place, or freeze.

2 Responses

  1. Bethany

    Do you have any advice for making fruit leathers in a dehydrator? Or would you recommend baking for best results? I’m having a difficult time figuring my dehydrator out…

  2. I haven’t actually used a dehydrator for making fruit leather. If you can figure it out, it is a good way to retain the fruit’s nutritional value. Though you can also make the fruit leather in the oven at 100 degrees or less. It will just take longer to cook. Baking gave me great results but I’m sure a dehydrator would be excellent as well.

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