Food drying is one of the oldest methods of preserving food. Since drying reduces the moisture in foods making them lightweight and convenient to store, it can easily be used in place of other food preservation techniques. In fact, one can even use drying along with other food preservation techniques such as freezing or canning, which would make the process of food preservation even better.
Drying food is simple, safe and easy to learn. The early American settlers practiced drying food using the natural forces of sun and wind and today, the use of technology has revolutionized this method of preserving food. With modern food dehydrators, foods such as fruit leathers, fruit chips, dried nuts and seeds and meat jerky, can all be dried year-round at home.
Being easy to store and carry and requiring no refrigeration makes dried foods ideal for domestic use as well as for use in the rough outdoors.
Moreover, dried foods are good sources of quick energy and wholesome nutrition, since the only thing lost during preservation is moisture. For instance, meat jerky, dried nuts and seeds are good sources of protein for a snack or a meal. The fruit leathers and chips provide plenty of quick energy. Dried vegetables, too, can be used to prepare wholesome casseroles and soups and the nutritional value can be enhanced by using the soaking water for cooking. Therefore, dried foods are an easy food option for busy executives, hungry backpackers and active women and children, all of whom can benefit from the ease of use and nutritional content of dried foods.
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