How to Dry Cranberries in a Dehydrator.
Dried cranberries, often known as “craisins,” are delicious snacks that are also fantastic on salads, in baked goods, with cereal, or with yogurt.
The majority of dried cranberries offered in stores are sweetened. The procedure for sweetening is covered in these instructions. You may choose not to add sugar to your homemade craisins but bear in mind that unsweetened cranberries can have a sharp, astringent flavor.
Other tiny, smooth-skinned berries, such as blueberries and juneberries, may be processed in the same way. There is no need to sweeten them before serving since they are inherently sweeter than cranberries.
- Wash the cranberries, then “check” them by covering them with boiling water in a big dish or saucepan. Ten minutes should be given for the berries to soak in the boiling water. The majority of them will pop at that period (split open). We’ll take care of any duds that don’t pop later, so don’t worry if there are a few.
- In a colander, drain the cranberries. Make a simple syrup by heating 2 parts water to 1 part sugar over low heat while they are draining for a while. Stir the sugar until all of it has dissolved.
- Put the examined, drained cranberries back in the container they soaked in.
To evenly cover the berries in the simple syrup, add the berries.
- To collect any drips, place a piece of parchment paper or aluminum foil on the bottom of the dehydrator. Make sure that none of the cranberries contact when you arrange them on the dehydrator trays. Any cranberries that did not pop during their soak in boiling hot water should be put aside before pouring the rest of the cranberries on the trays.
Then, after you’ve done arranging the berries that did pop, go back to the ones that didn’t, puncture each one with the point of a paring knife, and then arrange them with the other cranberries on one of the dehydrator trays.
- Dry the cranberries in the dehydrator at 135°F for the remaining time after the initial half-hour at 150°F. The berries need between 8 and 14 hours to completely dry. When you rip one of the craisins in half, there shouldn’t be any obvious beads of moisture on the break line. Instead, the texture should be slightly leathery or chewy. Start checking them for doneness after 8 hours (I find it simplest to dry them overnight and then check them in the morning). Turn off the dehydrator and allow the cranberries rest for 20 to 30 minutes before testing them. Keep in mind that they will feel a little tougher and drier after they have cooled.
- To condition the dried, cooled fruit, add cranberries to glass jars until they are two-thirds full. For a week, keep the jars covered and at room temperature.
Over the course of the conditioning week, shake the jars at least twice daily. Any moisture the berries may still have is uniformly redistributed throughout the conditioning process. Additionally, it offers you the option to determine if they have been adequately dried for mold-free storage: Return the cranberries to the dehydrator or oven at 135°F for a few more hours if any condensation forms on the inside surfaces of the jars during the conditioning process.
- After the week of conditioning, mix the cranberries to fill the jars to the top. (You only filled them two-thirds full so you could shake the fruit about while it was conditioning.)