Dryer: what is the cult household appliance and how to use it

    Dryer: what is the cult household appliance and how to use it

    THEdrying it is a simple, very trendy method of conservation and cooking.

    «It has developed hand in hand with raw food cuisine, with a passion for dried fruit and vegetables, and is having an exponential development», begins Leopoldo Cervo, nutrition biologist.

    So much so that, more and more frequently, celebrated chefs also offer the dryer, like Pietro Leemann di Joia, in Milan, the first Michelin star for vegetarian cuisine in Europe, Simone Salvini of Ghita Academy, an academy of haute vegetable cuisine, and Martino Beria, protagonist of the online magazine La Cucina Vegetariana.

    Because the dryer offers the opportunity to create colorful, fun, tasty, light dishes.

    "But most of all dehydrates and, removing the water, enhances the flavors, makes them stronger, more intense and persistent », adds Cervo. Giving you super-flavored "concentrated" ingredients. Able to overturn any dish.

    «If the temperatures are kept low and the times are not too long, drying is a cooking method capable of maintaining the nutritional values ​​of many foods unaltered. I am thinking in particular of vitamins which, with heat, can denature their chemical structure, losing most of their beneficial characteristics. Especially those of groups B, E and C, the most delicate. For foods that contain them - for example broccoli, citrus fruits, kiwis, plums, bananas, peas - it is advisable not to exceed the temperature range that goes from 30 to 50 ° C », explains our expert.

    Also, if you want to follow the basic rule of raw food, reaches a maximum temperature of 42 ° C, thus preserving all the nutrients and above all the antioxidant capacity of food.

    "At the same weight, then, dried foods contain almost four times the fiber compared to fresh, perfect for obtaining a detox effect and to lend a hand to the intestine", adds the nutritionist.

    «But that's not enough, the advantages of drying also lie in the fact that it is a simple, economical treatment, which guarantees a long conservation, without risk if done correctly. Since it is simply a matter of removing the water, it is a process that, especially in particularly sweet foods, can lead to a spike in sugar and calories. So be careful not to overdo it if you like them dehydrated figs, apricots, bananas, grapes and pineapple. The advice is not to exceed, on average, 30 grams per day ».

    Using it is simple

    You must follow the instructions of your appliance, because some work with temperatures, others with preset programs, specific for certain types of food. You will always find the indications, for each individual food, in the instructions of the dryer. For this, in our recipes, we give you the time, not the temperature.

    How do you choose

    The choice is wide, with prices ranging, on average, from 50 to 200 €. The programs vary in temperature and duration; they are calibrated on the drying of the most diverse foods (herbs, mushrooms, fruit, vegetables) and on the cooking of real dishes. Temperatures generally start from 20 ° C to get to 70. Pay attention to consumption: there are many models that guarantee low energy consumption.

    There is also a wide choice of sizes: for convenience, especially if you want to create snacks, creckers and bars, it is advisable to focus on a rectangular dryer.

    And the number of baskets? If you use it a lot, the classic 3 or 5 are not enough, it is better to address yourself on versions at 10.


    Start testing yourself: turn on the dryer and follow our recipes. We offer you three, all of them delicious. For temperatures: follow the directions on your dryer. Each has different powers and programs, specific for the various foods.

    • Crackers mediterranei

    For 4 people: 500 g of sesame seeds, 150 g of peeled almonds, 50 g of cherry tomatoes, 25 g of drained or unsalted capers, extra virgin olive oil to taste, oregano to taste.

    Soak the sesame seeds for a couple of hours, then remove the water, mix them with all the other ingredients and blend them. Cover the surfaces of the dryer with parchment paper and spread the cream obtained over them, with a thickness of a few millimeters. Let it dry for 12 hours, then cut into a cracker shape.

    • Chocolate cookies

    For 4 people: 300 g of cashews, 80 g of raw cocoa powder, 50 g of coconut butter, 60 g of agave syrup, 5 vanilla pods, fine sea salt to taste.

    Coarsely chop the cashews in a food processor until they have a breadcrumb-like consistency. Then cover the shelves of the dryer with parchment paper and spread out carefully, maintaining a constant thickness of about 10 mm. You can already shape it, simply using the edge of a glass to cut the cookies. Then let it dry for about 15 hours.

    • Banana chocolates

    For 4 people: 3 bananas, 300 g of dark chocolate.

    Peel the bananas and cut them into very small pieces, then arrange them on a sheet of parchment paper cut to size to fit into the dryer. Leave to dry for 20 hours. When they are ready, melt the chocolate slowly in a double boiler. Then use silicone chocolate molds, fill them halfway with banana pieces and then cover with chocolate. Then put in the freezer for 2 hours, and let it rest for 10 minutes before enjoying them.

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