Hi my name is Tammy and I blog over at www.housingaforest.com I am a mom of 3 wonderful kids and I am a High School art teacher. I enjoy being creative and encouraging my kids to be creative as well. I love doing art projects with them, and watching them be experiment. There is something simple and wonderful about how kids express themselves. My tool of choice is the glue gun, but I also love to paint, cook and sew.
I love making healthy snacks for my family. My kids LOVE these simple healthy roll-ups. They taste great and my favorite part is that they are 100% natural fruit! The combinations of fruit are endless, however strawberry kiwi is one of the kids favorites.
The riper your fruit is, the more flavor it will have and the sweeter your leather will be. We don’t add any sugar to our fruit leather, but my kids enjoy the tart flavor. I figure, if they like it without the sugar, why add it! Plus as the fruit puree dehydrates, it is concentrated and becomes sweeter.
Kiwi Strawberry Fruit Leather
2 cups of cut up Kiwi
2 cups of cut up Strawberries
1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice (to keep the leather from turning brown, but not necessary)
You can add up to 1/4 cup of sugar or 2 tablespoons of honey. Make sure to taste the fruit mixture first, you might be surprised at how sweet it is naturally.
Wash your fruit, and cut into large chunks. Since you are going to be boiling the mixture, you really don’t have to be too careful about the size of fruit pieces you are making.
Place the 4 cups of cut up fruit and the lemon juice into a sauce pan. You don’t need to add any water, since as the fruit warms it will create its own juice. It seems like adding water would be a good idea, but remember that in dehydrating you are removing all the water from your food. If you add water, you will just be prolonging the process. If I can save a few minutes, it is totally worth it! Stir the fruit mixture over medium heat for about 5-6 minutes. Cook until the fruit breaks apart and bubbles.
Transfer the fruit mixture into a blender or food processor. I’m usually too impatient to let it cool, so usually end up with foggy glasses. Process until the mixture is completely blended and no fruit chunks remain.
Pour your blended mixture onto a fruit leather sheet(Teflex sheet), on top of a mesh dehydrator screen. Spread the mixture evenly to about 1/4 inch thickness and slightly thicker at the edges. Turn your dehydrator to the fruit leather setting about 130 degrees and in about 8-10 hours your leather will be done. However, start checking the leather after about 4 hours. When top is very firm and edges are easy to lift, carefully peel leather from sheet, flip over and continue drying.
If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can also do the same thing in your oven. Simply line a cookie sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper (DON’T use wax paper). Preheat your over to the lowest setting that it goes, usually around 150-170 degrees. Bake for about 8-10 hours. Check often to make sure that it is not finishing quicker.
I love all the seeds! Your leather is done when it is evenly firm, with no visible moist spots. It should still be flexible and not brittle.
Before your leather is cooled, peel it from the sheet and place on parchment paper. Cut it into strips and tie with a string. Store in an airtight container and place in a cool, dry place. These don’t last that long in our house since my kiddos LOVE them. Ours our always disappear quickly, but they should last up to 2 – 4 weeks. If you are looking to keep them longer, then the leather can be stored in the freezer for up to a year.
These healthy dehydrated fruit snacks are also a favorite for my kids. Especially the dehydrated kiwi that tastes like sour patch kids!