Saturday, December 10, 2011

Dehydrating Celery

Since celery was at such a good price during Thanksgiving, I took the opportunity to stock up on it for my dried foods storage. There are as many different ways to dehydrate celery on the internet as there are to cook chili.

While doing this batch, I saw quite a few websites that talked about grinding the celery and mixing with salt to make celery salt. That's something I'd like to try in the future. I need to get a new grinder for spices before I can, though.

Edited 12/18/11 to add permalink to celery salt post:

After trying a few different methods, this is the one I've settled on as liking the best. It gives the best color, although it takes a longer amount of time.

  1. Wash celery well.
  2. Cut off leaves and wide root ends
  3. Slice celery into 1/4" slices (crosswise)*
  4. Put slices into bowl of cold water if processing a lot.**
  5. Just before loading dehydrator, soak celery in 6 cups of water with 1 tablespoon of baking soda for 5 minutes.***
  6. Drain and load dehydrator trays.
  7. Dry at 110°F  until celery breaks easily, 16-18 hours. 

*This is the size with which I like to cook. I've seen directions for 1" slices and have considered doing that for putting under roasting meats; however, I've not done it so far.

**How much you process depends on the size of the celery, your stamina and dehydrator. It took 3 bunches of medium celery to fill 6 trays for my Nesco dehydrator.

***Do this in batches if you don't have a huge bowl.

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