Chicken Coop Chatter©
Do you have left over vegetables, but not enough for another meal? Of course you could toss them to the chickens, but I simply dehydrate them. I make vegetable leather, vegetable powder or dry the vegetables whole or in pieces depending on the size. Virtually all vegetables can be dehydrated, the leafy greens, the corn kernels, or bean and pea pods. There really are no limits.
For Leather: Puree' the cooked vegetables, and pour out onto your dehydrator trays. I do not add seasoning to the vegetables, but you can of course add seasoning or flavoring of your choice. If they've been seasoned while cooking, that's fine. If you are using fresh vegetables, simply simmer them until soft, then puree' for the leather or dehydrate whole or in pieces depending on size. If there is extra liquid in the puree' strain it off and use the liquid for broth in other recipes. The broth can be used as a substitute for water or other liquid called for in recipes or recipes requiring broth. This broth can be frozen or refrigerated. (Refer to my link for further info on making fruit and vegetable leather:
To dehydrate: Line the dehydrator sheet with plastic wrap. Pour out the puree' onto the covered dehydrator tray, and spread as evenly and thinly as possible. Dehydrate at 145-150 (check your own dehydrator for recommendations). Allow to dry until pliable, with no soft spots, until thoroughly dry. Roll up in the same plastic wrap, label and place in an air tight container. Keep in a cool, dry environment or freeze to use later.
To Make Powder: Following the above instructions, dehydrate until the leather or pieces are completely dry and crisp. With a food chopper, whirl until powdered. Funnel into air tight containers and store in the cupboard with your spices to use as seasoning for soup, stew, casseroles or recipes that would be enhanced with the flavors of vegetables. (a good way for kids to get their vegetables and not even know it.)
For spice jars and mini Food Chopper please refer to the links below.
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