Jul 6, 2023
We love peaches, yellow or white. They are so delicious and juicy, especially when they’re in season and ripe. We got really good ones today and want to enjoy the flavor when the peaches are out of season. Thanks to our Harvest Right freeze dryer, we can certainly do that all year round!
Wash the fruit thoroughly, especially if you’re going to leave the skin on. Then, remove the pit to make it easier to process. For us, we just cut the peach in half with a knife, going around the fruit but not cutting through the pit. This makes it easier to split the peach and just score the pit with a knife.
Others use a peach pitter or pliers to get the core out before or after slicing. A core slicer can make your life easier but we don’t recommend this for ripe peaches.
If you have a pair of really new long-nose pliers, that can work too. First, wash the pliers thoroughly to get all the grease out. Next, slightly open the pliers about the size of the core, and pierce through the peach from the top until you reach the center. Close the pliers then carefully pull out the core.
For this batch of freeze drying, we peeled the peaches and cut them into cubes. You can cut them in half circles, or rings, whatever you prefer. What’s important is you keep the same consistency so that they all freeze dry evenly.
You can use any peeler or a knife, but a swiss/speed peeler works best. If the peach you have is too soft for peeling, you can blanch instead.
Cut an x on the top and bottom of each peach. Shallow cuts will do; we just need to break the skin. Put the peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds, 20 if it’s rapid boiling. Then use a slotted spoon to take out the peaches immediately and dunk them in ice water. Once they’re cool to the touch, you can peel off the skins starting from the X that you made earlier. For others, they just use paper towels to grab and peel the skin.
For us, we boiled some water, turned off the heat, and threw the peaches in. We left the peaches for 3-4 minutes, then dunked them in an ice water bath.
Once your peaches are peeled and cored, you can either slice them or dice them. Just remember that thicker cuts may need longer freeze drying, and thinner cuts freeze dry faster.
If you want to keep the skins, it’s okay. Some don’t take out the skins because they give lots of vitamins and fiber. But if you plan on rehydrating your peach, add it to your oatmeal or use it for baking? We found that the skin gets this leathery consistency, but others seem to love them.
Here we used our freeze dryer preset settings. We didn’t customize is because we weren’t freeze drying a large batch. But others say they went as much as 36 hours for freeze drying.
You’ll find the settings right for your peaches when you are freeze-drying them yourself. That’s what we love about freeze-drying. There are so many ways to learn, and it’s easy to figure out how to make it right for you.
The peaches will slightly fade in color, but ever so slightly. They should be crunchy, dry, and brittle to the touch. If any piece of peach feels wet, cold, and soft, add more freeze-drying time.
The peaches taste awesome, especially when it’s ripe and in season. You get to taste the delicious sweetness of the fruit with its distinct tartness. Basically, you’ll enjoy the flavor of the fruit at its stage of ripeness you got them. For example, If the peaches are a bit raw, you’ll get that sharp tartness when you. But if you freeze-dried the fruit at the peak of ripeness, then you’ll get a delicious surprise.
When you rehydrate the fruit, the bright colors come back. Amazingly, also the taste. It’s like you’re eating fresh fruit. The kids can’t get enough of it, and we could barely keep up with them.
You can store the peaches in two different ways, depending on how often you use them.
One is by using air-tight containers like Lock & Lock, Tupperware, or your trusty mason jar. There are vacuum sealers for mason jars to help keep your freeze-dried fruit last longer. This way, you can easily grab some whenever you need them for your drinks, smoothies, or snacking.
Another and most popular one is in Mylar bags. These help your peaches last long for 25+ years. In addition, they’re great in keeping out moisture and air, which are the main culprits for ruining preserved food.
Whatever way you choose, make sure to keep the containers away from heat, water, light, and draft. What we do is throw in an oxygen absorber or two to help prevent any oxidation from happening. We also keep the containers in a dark room that has a temp no more than 72°F (22°C). Others prefer 70°F (21°C) to be sure, especially during the summer.
If you’re a fan of fruit punches, this is going to be a treat for you. You can just put in slices or cubes of freeze-dried peaches in a pitcher of your favorite fruit drink.
They can also add great flavor and texture to smoothies. Just throw them in the blender with your favorite ingredients, then add more water if you need to.
You can also make pies and cupcakes with them. You can either reconstitute them before using or add some more water to help the peaches plump up. Whatever you choose, remember to adjust the recipe so you’ll still get the same consistency.
So far, our favorite is snacking on them. The kids can’t get enough, and we’re fine with it because they’re eating healthy food. They get their sugary craving and, at the same time, take in the vitamins that they need to grow healthy.
Have you tried freeze-drying peaches? Got questions? Let us know in the comment section!
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