My neighbor has a food dehydrator (it just sits on the kitchen counter and makes this little humming noise while it's working). I have never seen a dehydrator in my whole life, so obviously, I'm amazed at the trays of shriveled apple slices. She lifts the lid and lets me sample the most delicious, chewy, tart, dried apples. They have changed form into these strong, long-lasting things!
I'm addicted. It's all I can think about.
Over the weekend, another set of neighbors (who have had to listen to my new obsession with dehydrated fruit on the walk to school) present me with an early 40th birthday present: It's a food dehydrator!
I slice some apples, and six hours later, I have piles of apple candy. I decide to dehydrate the apple peel, and it makes apple chips that are so flavorful I can't believe it.
Oh, the after school snacks we will have in the bitter cold winter when we long for the tart apples of October! Oh, the veggies and jerky and fruit roll ups I can make!
Then I read that one can store dehydrated fruit for 30 years on the shelf, and this fruit will retain its vitamins and minerals. I have no idea if this is true, but it seems promising.
I think of how that dehydrator works: the warm air just sucks the moisture out. For someone who values hydration, this seems so counter to a good thing. It seems terrible--the dried up, shriveled work of it. But this process cultivates a certain strength and longevity, a certain sweetness and tenacity.
With these long day of work and parenting, we feel shriveled and dried up. We've changed form into wrinkled, withered things.
But oh, how sweet.