How To Freeze Dry Figs

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Freeze Dried Fruits

One of the best descriptions of figs we came across is that it’s food that bites you back. It’s an exotic fruit that has this acidity that kicks you along with that burst of sweetness. They taste best when freshly picked and just at the right moment of ripeness. Take them too early, and they taste horrible. Wait too long, and you’ve got an overripe, inedible fruit in your hands. Also, you can only store figs in the fridge for 3 days, so it’s hard to stock up. So today, we’ll teach you how to freeze dry figs to lock their sweet flavor and make them last for decades instead of days.

How Do I Prepare Figs for Freeze Drying?

Figs are one of the simplest fruits to freeze dry. It requires minimal prepping, just like strawberries and bananas.

All you have to do is wash them well to get out all the grime and dirt from the skin. Then cut them in half or quarters to make them easy to freeze-dry and eat. This is easy to do with fresh figs.

If you got frozen figs from your grocery store, you might want to let them get soft first in the fridge before cutting. It’s safer to cut them when they’re not rock-hard. Thawing them in the refrigerator also prevents undesirable melting that can change the consistency of your freeze-dried fruit.

Is Pre-Freezing Figs Before Freeze Drying Necessary?

Pre-freezing figs before freeze-drying is totally optional. You can pop them in your freeze dryer once the fruit and the unit are ready. But pre-freezing does help your freeze dryer reach proper temperatures faster.

This reduces your machine’s wear and tear and helps shorten the freeze-drying time. Makes your system efficient too. You’ve got your fruits getting ready even while you’ve got something going in the freeze dryer. Also, since figs spoil easily, keeping them in the freezer helps keep their fresh, edible state. Useful if you’re currently busy with things that you can’t freeze dry your fruit immediately.

freeze dried figs in a white bowl with cloth background

How To Freeze Dry Figs

With Harvest Right, it’s easy to freeze dry figs for personal and commercial use.

  1. Turn on the unit and press “START > NON-LIQUID > NOT FROZEN.”
  2. For pre-frozen fruits, select “FROZEN” and then give your unit time to cool down until it’s at -8°F (-22 °C) or colder than your freeze dryer.
  3. Close the drain valve when your unit is ready (it will send a prompt).
  4. Load your fig trays and close the chamber door securely.
  5. Press “CONTINUE” and the freeze dryer will do the rest.

How Long Does It Take To Freeze Dry?

Freeze-drying figs can take up to 31-36 hours, depending on how many you have and how warm your freeze dryer’s location is. A YouTuber posted two freeze-drying videos, one with fresh figs, and another with frozen ones. Comparing the two videos, the pre-frozen fruit took 5 hours less to freeze dry, even if the amount or weight of figs were almost the same.

How Do Freeze Dried Figs Taste Like?

Freeze-dried figs have twice as much flavor compared to fresh ones. That’s why it’s crucial that you freeze dry figs at their peak ripeness because that will be the preserved flavor.

They’re crunchy, light, and airy in their freeze-dried state, much like eating crunchy cookies. They’re so delicious that you’ll find yourself digging into your stash every now and then.

How Do I Rehydrate Them?

If you want a softer, moist fruit, you can reconstitute your freeze-dried figs with water. Place the freeze-dried fruit slices in a bowl and pour water to cover half of the figs. Stir every now and then so that all the slices get moisture. It’s easier to prevent them from getting waterlogged this way.

Some don’t care for reconstituted freeze-dried figs, while others are okay with it. Test a couple of slices to see which one works for you.

pile of freeze dried figs

How Long Do They Last?

Freeze-dried figs last for 25 years or more under ideal storage conditions. Mylar bags with oxygen absorbers are best to use for long-term storage. However, if you’re going to eat the freeze-dried fruit within a year, Mason jars work really well. They’re reusable and resealable, perfect if you want simple living with minimal waste. Just remember to remove and replace the used oxygen absorber whenever you open your bags or jars.

Keep them in a cool, dry place when you’re done bagging and storing. Never let the storage room temp go above 72°F (22 °C) as heat promotes bacterial growth. Relative humidity should also be 15% or less. Moisture is the #1 spoiler of food, so keep your storage room as dry as possible.

Freeze-dried figs are great for snacking and are healthy too. They’re often recommended to tone intestines because of their high fiber content. It’s a great source of calcium and potassium for bone density. Having them in your food storage gives you a snack that your kids can eat without you worrying about their bodies.

Do you wish to eat freeze-dried figs as they are or reconstituted? Let us know in the comment section.

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