Fresh vegetables, fruits and berries should not be kept at room temperature for long periods of time, since bacteria, yeast, mold, etc., multiply particularly actively in this mode.p., and inside the plant tissues the normal metabolism is disturbed. And the main friend of bacteria is moisture, which is abundant in the pulp of fruits, berries and vegetables.
What is infrared drying?
Modern devices exploit the power of infrared radiation, which is friendly to the environment and people. Infrared radiation of a certain wavelength is actively absorbed by water and not by the tissue of the product to be dried, so the removal of moisture is possible at low temperatures 40 to 70 ° C .
Drying at relatively low temperatures makes it possible to preserve the vitamins, biologically active substances, natural color and aroma of the product almost to the full extent 80-90% .
Infrared dryers have a special ceramic coating on the heating elements, and according to the manufacturers, their working life is almost unlimited. Fast, uniform drying of food is ensured by a system of baffles and air ducts.
Dried products are easy to store, because compared to the original raw materials the dried product decreases in volume by 3-4 times, and in mass – by 4-8 times.
The specific final characteristics depend on the initial type and shape of the product – so, for example, mushrooms shrink to a much greater extent than apples or plums.
Manufacturers of electric dryers claim that products can be stored for a year without a special container, with a loss of vitamins of 5 to 15%.
In hermetically sealed containers the shelf life of dry foodstuffs increases up to two years. All these data refer to an environment with relatively low humidity – the northern regions and the Black Earth zone, including New York and the New York region.
If the food is dried in a humid climate – for example, on the Black Sea coast, the safe storage time is reduced by about 1.5-2 times.
It is also important that the infrared dried products contain no preservatives or other foreign substances, are not affected by electromagnetic fields and radiation, do not allow active development of microflora.
The products dried by infrared drying technology should be soaked in water for 10-20 minutes before consumption, after which they will regain all their natural characteristics – their color, natural flavor, shape and, of course, their taste.
Afterwards the food can be consumed raw or can be cooked in any way – boiled, fried, stewed, etc.d.
Storing dried fruits, vegetables and mushrooms
For long-term storage it is absolutely necessary not to leave any undried bits among fruits, vegetables and mushrooms, any such elements can ruin even the best drying results.
Pour the dried products from all the trays into one common box and leave for 2 days. During this time they will cool down, and the moisture in them will even out-the drier pieces will absorb moisture from the drier ones.
Put the dried fruits and berries into the storage container. Store dried produce in cool, dry rooms so it does not absorb vapors from the air. Can be stored in wooden or plywood boxes, with paper on the bottom.
When the box is full, also cover the top with a layer of paper and seal the lid. The most reliable way of storage is hermetically sealed packaging in glass jars.
Basic rules of operation of the electric dryer
1 It is not advisable to dry the product beforehand cutting and trimming , since the surfaces of the stale product will be significantly moistened by the juices released, which will make drying more difficult.
2 It is not advisable to dry products with widely differing moisture content and odors on the same pallet.
3 It is forbidden to keep flammable substances near the electric dryer when it is switched on.
4 Do not cover the upper ventilation openings and do not place any objects on them.
5 It is necessary to prevent moisture from getting directly onto the emitters of the dryer.