For raw foodies, the dehydrator can be one of the most useful pieces of equipment in the kitchen. Not only does it enhance flavors, create amazing wraps, crackers and breads, it, most importantly, allows us to “cook” food without destroying the nutrients and enzymes. The key to dehydrating is to keep the temperature below 115° F.

Setting the Temperature to 145° F for 1 Hour then Reducing to 105° – 115° F
This technique is used to decrease the dry time, save energy, and also cuts down on the possibility of introducing bacteria to some of the recipes.  It also allows the food to create a crust on the outside without “cooking” it. This technique is better used on thick recipes such as breads, cookies, cakes, and some cereals like granola. You can apply this technique to raw cheeses to give them a rind.

Using Your Oven to Dehydrate
If you want to experiment with making dehydrated foods, try using your oven. The end product may not be completely raw in the end, but it’s worth giving it a try.

Set your oven on the lowest possible setting. Place the raw foods on a non-stick, oven-ready pan. Place in the oven and keep the door open ajar with a wooden spoon or use a fan if you have one to keep the air flowing so there’s no condensation building up.

The timing will be different when using an oven versus a dehydrator so you may need to dehydrate for about half the recommended time. In any case, you can experiment with the timing.

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