Its high season now and you’ve got to put away as much food as you can while things are at their peak stage of ripeness. On Saturday morning, Courtney and I bought two 18 Lb boxes of peaches at the nearest farm stand. Once we got home we immediately began cutting and and prepping the fruit. Personally, we both agreed that we have had better peaches, but these would be good enough for preserving.
We made 22 half pints of peach jam and the rest will be dried.
To dry, we used the Oster food dehydrator that I received as a gift from my mother in law. It works great. (Thank you!) Twelve peaches will fill up the dehydrator and it yields two and a third quarts of finished product. It only takes ten hours to dry four trays of peaches. Once dry, we put the slices in quart size ball jars and tighten the lids.
I tried drying outside in the sun too. That was a much slower process. I draped a sheer nylon curtain over the trays to keep bugs out. Between the breeze, the dogs and a toddler, that method wasn’t going to work. I brought the trays in and rotated them into the dehydrator for the next batch. This renewed my interest to build a New Mexico style solar dehydrator. You can see a diagram in the image gallery of this article at Mother Earth News.