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Scott Owens

Physicist, Programmer, Brewer, Preserver

30

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Drying mandarins and bananas for a road trip

I prepared these experiments as a bit of an experiment using our new oven so I would have something to eat during a 6.5 hour intercity train trip, and a 4.5 hour car trip a few days later.
I wanted to try something I hadnt before (drying mandarin) and a different method of doing something I had (banana at low temperatures)

I prepared the ingredients by first peeling the bananas (2 of them), the first I cut in half, and then into strips, the first I cut into normal disks.

I then prepared the mandarin's (2 again) by peeling and separating the segments, on one tray (with the long strips of banana) I peirced holes in them with a knife, and the other I did not.

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I set these to dry in my oven at 45 degrees Centigrade (113 Fahrenheit) for 4 hours. After this I turned it down to 30C (86 Fahrenheit) overnight while I slept.

Come morning (about 7am, roughly 8 hours after turning down), the banana was about as dry as it would get, it was an oily variety of banana so it was still soft and oily, but not wet, so I removed them from the trays.

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I stored the banana in a resealable bag as they would be eaten that day and a few days later, long term storage wasnt a consideration

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I then put the mandarin back in the oven and turned the temperature up to 60C (140 Fahrenheit) as they were barely dried.

About 4 hours later there was a substantial improvement

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dried and slightly crispy I was excited to try them.

Overall I was happy with the experiment, the mandarins tasted of marmalade and were delicious, I will revisit this, but perhapse try just the higher temperature from the start next time.

The banana was nice, however my previous experiences of having it start at a higher temperature and remain there resulted in a more roasted banana flavour which I enjoyed more, so I will likely return to that technique.

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