Sometimes I get up on my high horse and declare that I will never waste food ever again.
I will keep every broccoli stalk and find a way to incorporate it into our menu plan. I will keep orange peels and find time to make my own orange oil cleaner. I will not buy a different kind of apple when there is a bowl full of perfectly good apples sitting right there.
And then sometimes I throw my hands in the air and give up.
I really do feel that food is a precious resource that we are lucky to have access to. I don’t like wasting it. I’d like to use every bit of it in some way, to make sure I never buy excess or let something go rotten in the bottom of the fridge. But who am I kidding?
Some weeks I am barely keeping up with putting dinner on the table, let alone figuring out how to cook broccoli stalks so my kids will eat it. Some weeks I am barely coping as a parent without having the argument about eating the ‘yucky apples’ before I buy different ones. Sometimes my ideals are all well and good… but I have to let some of them go in order to keep going.
And I really do have to let go.
Yesterday I let go of the broccoli stalks and fed them to the guinea pigs. I let go of the orange peels and burned them in the fire so the room smelled nice for a moment or two. I let go of those things and didn’t beat myself up about it… but I couldn’t let go of the apples.
A whole bowl full of apples that had been declared ‘yucky’.
I could have cooked them up and made pie, but we have a freezer full of cooked apples and I wasn’t feeling virtuous enough to make pie for the apple haters. So what other ways would my lot eat apples? They love dried apples… I wonder if I could dry apples in the oven??
With nothing top loose but a bowl of ‘yucky apples’ I decided to give it a go.
How to Make Oven Baked Dried Apples
Apples – yucky or otherwise.
Cinnamon and All Spice – optional
Trays lined with baking paper.
The how to is pretty simple really…
Peel and core your apples and cut them into think slices. It was about half way through that I wished I’d splurged on that apple corer cutting machine thingy! The thinner you cut them the quicker they’ll dry and the crispier they’ll be.
Dip the apple into the lemon juice (this stops it from going brown, you could totally skip this step if you don’t care) and arrange in a single layer on the tray.
We sprinkled some of our slices with a combo of cinnamon and all spice, and left some plain.
Pop them in the oven at the lowest temperature you can manage. My oven only starts counting at 100 C so set it to 100 for the first hour then alternated between that and just the fan left on in the warm oven for each half hour after that.
Check on your apples every hour or so and turn them at least once during the oven drying process. Sprinkle the other side with the spice mix when you turn them.
How long it takes will depend on how thing you cut the apples, how warm your oven is and how crispy you like them.
We left ours in for the better part of 5 hours and they were still quite soft and pliable. I imagine they would not keep for long unless you dry them completely, but even though I am rationing them out slowly, they’ll all be eaten within a few days here.
And tomorrow I will go and buy more apples… not yucky ones… hopefully.