View Full Version : Is there an easy alternative to the Dehydrator?
09-02-2006, 11:26 PM
09-02-2006, 11:54 PM
They mentioned that they had a convection oven that they used and put it on a low temp. and that it worked out fine. It blew warm air over the food.
09-03-2006, 05:51 AM
If you google non electric food dehydrators you will get to one that uses the sun to dry. It is a mesh box with shelvs.
09-03-2006, 10:11 AM
That might have been me who mentioned the convection oven. I have used it but it is not as convenient as the dehydrator with lots of shelves. The countertop convection oven has only 2 or at the most 3 shelves for one thing. That can only be an advantage if you are dehydrating something that needs the adjustable height.
I think I have read that some people were going to try using a conventional oven on lowest setting with the door cracked for air circulation. I have never heard how that turned out though. I suppose you could rig up a little fan to clip onto the door and blow in over the food. But it would still tie up the oven for many hours while maybe someone else who wants to use the oven in the usual way grinds their teeth in frustration.
I have seen pictures of those hanging non-electric dehydrators enclosed with screen or mesh. I was just thinking that they won't be much good now that the main sunny season is coming to an end.
THEN I thought, that means we will soon be heating our houses and that usually means there are vents blowing warm air. (Or even radiators, radiating warm air) If you have a floor (or ceiling) vent that is located in a convenient place, you could put in a sky-hook, hand the dehydrator from it and benefit from that blowing or radiating warm air.
09-03-2006, 11:02 AM
The sun dehydrators sound interesting... :)
OVEN METHOD: I've read that some people use their lowest setting in their oven... warm I think... and leave the door slightly ajar... to dehydrate. It is recommended to get a temperature gauge for the oven... it just clamps on an oven rack. Then, you can make sure the temperature isn't going over 115 degrees. You can use a baking sheet. If you're dehydrating something that needs 'flipped over' half way through dehydrating process... then you could use parchment paper on the baking sheet... removing it after you've turned over (what you've made) for second part of dehydrating.
I think you can find the temperature gauges in some grocery stores and Walmart. They are probably inexpensive.
Maybe there is someone who does the oven method can add more information of how to do it this way.
09-03-2006, 11:40 AM
I think the oven way wastes a lot of electricity, but it does work, my mom uses it to make dried fruit X-mas decorations... pretty, and they smell nice! However, I read an article by the people who make Excalibur dehydrators, because some people said their dehydrators were bad for RAW since they measured an air temp of over 115 deg or so, explaining that the air temp isn't as important as the temperature of the food (which is what you don't want overheated, afterall) and the temp of the food itself will usually be much lower (even up to 10 or 15 deg) than the air temp because of how thermodynamics work (YAY science)... so it is good to measure the temp if you try this, but measure the food temp and not just the air temp.
09-03-2006, 03:00 PM
Thanks Doe! :D
09-03-2006, 03:22 PM
Doe, I read the thread from your link. Entertaining! Can you imagine though, what would a car's upholstery smell like after the fumes from several batches of onion bread were dried in there? Hee Hee. Too much of a good think, I venture to guess.
09-03-2006, 04:41 PM
:D I use it more than my dehydrater, it has a circular pan that goes around in circles when you turn it on and a fan that blows the air.
I have spagetti squash in it now for dinner. I've used it before and the squash turns out great.
I love it and will continue to use it until it burns out, hope not too soon. :D :D
09-03-2006, 05:12 PM
I love the idea of the sun to dehydrate .
All the suns energy straight to my food. It would have to be super enclosed
I have visions of all the neighbourhood bugs
trying to get to my supper.
The car is a good idea, imagine all the nice smells in the car, would make a change from how musty I can smell now :rolleyes:
09-03-2006, 09:04 PM
Don't dehydrate food (I don't)! :D OK somebody had to chime in. :p
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