Frivolous Fridays are the Orbit bloggers’ excuse to post about fun things we care about that may not have serious implications for atheism or social justice. Any day is a good day to write about whatever the heck we’re interested in (hey, we put “culture” in our tagline for a reason), but we sometimes have a hard time giving ourselves permission to do that. This is our way of encouraging each other to take a break from serious topics and have some fun. Enjoy!
I own a fairly cheap food dehydrator and tend to get excited about using it from time to time. This year I pulled it out of storage when gearing up for camping and hiking trips and have taken to dehydrating everything in our kitchen, to the mild annoyance and amusement of my spouse. It’s a big bulky thing that takes up counter space, but it allows me to make my own lightweight food for work, school, and camp so I enjoy using it.
This year I’m being a little more creative than just dehydrating vegetables (though I’m definitely doing those too) and trying more sauces and liquidy stuff. After a few false starts (used improperly a dehydrator can accidentally become a very stinky incubator) I found a process that works well for me and my cheap system. Salsa dries beautifully, and I made a dish this week with dehydrated salsa, black beans, veggies, and instant rice that came out really good. Spaghetti sauce dehydrates very well and it’s a whole lot lighter and easier for me to carry a baggie of spaghetti sauce rather than a jar of the stuff. Applesauce made into fruit leather is a classic, and I love it as a chewy snack.
I also had a can of Campbell’s tomato soup in the cupboard. Generally things that don’t contain fat dehydrate very well, but canned tomato soup doesn’t have any fat so I figured I’d try it out and dry that. It should be able to reconstitute just fine, and I expect that it will work as a base for a meal or just fine as soup with some dry milk added. I put it on the dehydrator tray for awhile and it did indeed dry easily. However, removing the dehydrated soup from the plastic tray took a little work. It stuck together pretty well, in a harder plastic-like structure than something like applesauce or spaghetti sauce. In fact, as I pried the soup off the tray one end of the soup broke off to a sharp edge and I managed to give myself a good cut on my finger, much like a nasty paper cut. So that is how I cut myself on soup.
Still, the rest of the soup came off the tray just fine, and I bagged it up. It’s a small light package, so now I’ll just have to test it out and see how it tastes! I think it has potential, but only if I can find a way to get it off the tray without injury.