Wednesday, October 27, 2010

How to make fruit leather?

Having a toddler at home in itself consumes a lot of you (both energy and time) and if you have a picky eater like mine, then God bless you! I have memories of my childhood where my mom used to run after me with a glass of milk all around the house and now when I have to do the same with my little monster, I know what a pain it can be! At this age the last thing they want to do is sit at a dining table and waste their time having a hearty meal when they can have so much fun running all over during that time!

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A lot of my friends both from the blog world and my real world, who are in my shoes right now, have asked me to share some foolproof recipes which I use for my little one. So today I thought I'll come to you with a quick post where I wanted to share an easy recipe of something which I always stuff my refrigerator with and that is a Fruit Leather. I'm almost obsessed with fruit leathers now and make them out of all kinds of fruit from apples to pear, to berries! You just roll it up and hand it over to your toddler and they are good to go and best part is that they are so easy to make. So obviously its both my and my little monster's favorite.

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You can make fruit leather with any kind of fruit. Nectarines, apples, pears, all kind of berries whatever you want. I had tons of apples at home so I used that. So here's what you will need:

Fruits
Sugar (optional) - Since I don't want to give the little one unnecessary sugar, I don't add any extra sugar into my fruit leather but you sure can add if you want.
Lemon juice 


Method:

If you are using fruits like apples or pears, peel and core them and dice into smaller chunks. If using berries clean them and cut into small chunks.
Place it in a big pot and add water. To every 4 cups of fruit add 1/2 a cup of water or if the fruit is really juicy you can even try adding a little less or no water.
Bring it to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add sugar and lemon juice. To every 4 cups of fruit add 1- 1 1/2 tbsp of sugar and 1 tsp of lemon juice.
Let it simmer until the fruits are cooked. Now comes out every mom's best friend.... a hand blender! Blend the fruits into a smooth puree. Almost like baby food.
For the last time, if you want to taste and add some more sugar or lemon or even some spices like cinnamon or nutmeg you can do that now.
I skip this part to give a texture to my fruit leather but if you want you can strain the liquid through a strainer to get rid of any seeds.

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Now line a cookie sheet with oven proof plastic wrap. Transfer the mixture into the sheet. Spread it all over the sheet and the mixture should be about 1/4 inch thick. Try to keep the plastic wrap from falling over the liquid on the sides and covering it because then that part would not dry.
Preheat the oven to the minimum temperature that your oven can go into. Mine goes somewhere between 145-160 deg. F
Place the fruit puree into the oven for 8-10 hours. I put it inside the oven before going to bed and when I'm up my fruit leather is usually ready (you can even use a dehydrator if you don't or can't use an oven).
To test if its ready, touch it with a finger and if its not sticking to your finger and you can peel the leather off the plastic that's when you know you can take it out.

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Let it cool and then roll it up along with the plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator. You can even cut it into smaller pieces and then roll and store but I'm just too lazy to do that!
Hope your little one enjoys eating fruits after this!

fall-fest-logo-ruled This recipe goes to the fall fest event going on at Margaret's blog.




P.S:- Some of my lovely readers were not sure if using a plastic wrap would be safe since plastic might have BPA in it. I did a little research and it was confirmed my one of the blog readers that Glad Clingwraps which I recommended in my comments below is safe to use since they are BPA free.

48 comments:

  1. Lovely Clicks once again Prerna ..... And the title 'Fruit Leather' is quite amusing :)

    Cheers n Happy Cooking,
    Satrupa

    http://satrupa-foodforthought.blogspot.com

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  2. Thanks for a lovely recipe prerna. I'll surely try this on my little gal. And again lovely snaps :)

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  3. That is a great recipe! I love the idea.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  4. Thats pretty interesting although I definitely wont have a good night sleep thinking my oven is one and id have nightmares of the house burning down and all :)

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  5. I'm so doing this!! My kiddo is really anti-fruit. I think I will cut it up into fun shapes for him too.

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  6. 8-10 hours in oven...wow...long time..fruit leather looks really yummy!

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  7. Thanks guys! I too love this idea.
    @Urvashi- Cutting the leather into cute shapes is an awesome idea! I'm copying it :-)
    @Sanchita,@An Open Book- Yes,this needs to slow cook to prevent burning and you just need to dehydrate the fruit. Trust me when u have a picky eater like mine then you'll be willing to do even more crazy stuff :-)

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  8. what a great idea! I've never thought of making fruit leather, but I'll definitely try now. thanks for this!

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  9. That is a great idea Prerna! I don't have any picky kids at home (or any kids at all), but I'm going to make these for me and my husband! Were you able to buy oven safe plastic wrap at the grocery store?

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  10. This is great - and I don't even have any kids! I will surely try this - it sounds easy & no-fuss.

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  11. I make fruit leather too...in a dehydrator. Delicious!! I've never tried apple before so I'll have to do that yet this fall.

    I also have the same question as Megan...where to buy oven safe plastic wrap?

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  12. @andrea @megan - I use Glad Clingwrap (the normal plastic wraps you would use at home) they are oven safe.

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  13. Love your pic with the apples and leaves! Fruit leather! Who new it could be so easy?!

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  14. Love the idea. I am going to try it for sure :)

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  15. makes me think of aam papad and I am craving some one. This is a real neat idea for kids and I would think cutting them with cookie cutter fun shapes would make it even better for the kids ( I saw the store bought fruit rolls had the shapes).

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  16. This is wonderful and healthy snack and I love Mango one very much.. by the way ur pictures are always stunning.

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  17. Hi Prerna, this is such a great idea! Thank you for sharing. Just a question though - I know you wrote that there is oven-safe plastic wrap, but I wonder how "safe" it really is. Wouldn't that have BPA or PVC (or whatever that 3-letter acronym is for the toxins in plastic)? I wonder if the fruit leather would turn out the same using a greased baking sheet, or parchment paper, or a silpat?

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  18. Mia that's a very good question! I'll do my research and let you know. I'm not sure about the greased baking sheet since I've never used it. You can try and if it works please let me know.

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  19. I will definitely try this - We get Mango Leather ( aam Papad ) everywhere in India but great to try with other fruits too...and yes I think Baking sheet will be a better option. I don't like using micro waving with clingwrap or using plastic in oven. Thanks for the recipe dear...xx

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  20. I never thought of doing this in the oven. I can't wait to try it!

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  21. I loved leather fruit when I was a kid and keep promising myself I will try to make it for my kids. Thank you for inspiring me!

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  22. I've been meaning to make this with the mounds of apples I've acquired recently...i will definitely be using this recipe! lovely blog, glad to have found it!:)

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  23. I have never heard of this fruit leather. What a neat idea to feed kids! I'm sure your lil moster loved it! Got to try this for my lil monster. She is generally good with eating fruits. But I can make this for a change and we can eat too:)

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  24. What an awesome idea! Thank you so much for sharing this! I need to make some of this for Little Butt for sure!

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  25. I've always liked fruit leathers. Will have to make some fruit leathers as soon as mangoes come into season again.

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  26. It's hard to believe I've never tried this before. Thanks for posting a great tutorial!

    :)
    ButterYum

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  27. Oh what a great idea!!!! I am wondering could you do this with some vegetables too.
    I am going to try and let you know.

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  28. Love that still life of apples, Prerna. Never thought to make fruit leather at home but it's a fantastic idea.

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  29. My nearly 8-month old son dislikes fresh apple; I think it might be because of the tartness of it. But, I might try making and giving him some apple leather, may be it has a more mellow taste?

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  30. believe it or not, my dog LOVES fruit leather! We use it as treats instead of those processed dog bones you can buy at the store. I am so excited to find this tutorial on how to make my own for him-- I see myself fighting him for it now!!!

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  31. What plastic wrap do you use that is oven proof? Can't wait to try this!

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  32. Hi Prerna,
    This reminds me of Armadeen the appricot sheets sold at Middle Ester stores here in the Bay Area. It seems so simple to make this 'leather' I am going to try it one of these days. Judging by the Paratha I reproduced on weirdcombinations I am sure it will be another success in the house.
    The pics as always look amazing!
    Cheers,
    Heguiberto

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  33. I didn't know it was this easy to make fruit leather! Definitely going to try it out.

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  34. I made this with the leftover strawberries I had in my freezer last night and it is SO good!

    I just wish I had read all the comments because I didn't see that you use normal clingwrap. I didn't think my plastic wrap was oven-safe, so I tried using wax paper instead. Bad idea! I had to throw away half of the leather because I couldn't peel it off. :( I am going to buy some Glad (because I don't trust my generic plastic wrap) and try this again later in the week.

    For the person who mentioned toxins in plastic wrap, the Glad website says they don't have BPA or any other toxins in their plastic so it's safe to use, even if you heat it.

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  35. hiding fresh food solve not the problem. think about.

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  36. Just curious would you happend to know does this always have to be refrigerated? How long is the shelf life?Thanks for this idea we always have a ton of fruit.
    Cindy

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  37. Wow! This is really interesting. The thin films of fruits are looking yummy.

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  38. soposedly good for up to 3 years if refridgerated all the time

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  39. Awesome awesome recipe. But i wouldnt agree that this fruit leather can be given to kids instead of fruits. First, u peeled them so lots of fiber is lost... 2nd, having cooked it sooooooooo long would almost destroy all the nutrition in it. So a good tasty snack it sure is, but not a substitute for fruit

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  40. I use the entire fruit, peel and all. Plus I just puree and dehydrate. I do not cook first. If you dehydrate at a low temp many nutrients are saved.

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  41. Reminds me of 'Aam papad' - Fruit leather made with mangoes! Lovely blog btw - photographs and recipe and all :)

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  42. I've been making it for years. don't add sugar or cook. also, I let the sun do my drying on silpat mats. no oven needed in sunny CA.

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  43. The pic with the fruit leather peeling off looks insanely tempting. Here's a similar recipe of aam papad I found on the Prestige SmartChef website. They included cardamom pods to give it mild flavor and aroma. You could try this too in your fruit leather recipe.

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  44. Hello,
    We love your recipes, especially when its on fruit leather.
    These are so delicious.
    I have always looked at your blog for the various pictures and the way you write.Just Love it!
    You have shared some nice information about fruit leather in this post.
    The points you mentioned are genuine and perfect.
    The content completely describes about the topic you wanted to portray with us.
    Thanks for sharing such valuable post.

    Regards
    VentairIndia Team

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  45. great idea.. yummy i like fruit leather sounds different and love to eat..
    visit this http://www.benefitsofyogurt.net/benefits-of-yogurt-on-hair

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