It's early morning here in Yuma with the wind coming up quickly. It's definitely NOT your normal Yuma warm and sunny weather. The good thing is I never have to comb my hair. It always looks like I just got out of bed!!
So here's the amazing thing that happened yesterday. See this jar of funny looking stuff? It's freeze dried enchilada filling. Appropriate since I just made a terrible enchilada casserole. This was cooked and freeze dried by Cindy and Ray some time ago. You just put it in a jar, suck out all the air and stick it on the shelf. It can last up to 20 years. Crazy, right??
Dump it in a bowl and add water, a little at a time. Cindy added a little more chicken (yes it had freeze dried chicken in it also) and within minutes it tasted like she just made it. I was very surprised that the texture was just like if you made it that minute. I could not tell the difference in the rice, the beans, the olives or even the chicken.
She filled some tortillas, added a little sauce and cheese ... and VOILA!! Some of the best enchiladas I've had. I just can't believe it. FYI the tortillas were fresh ones.
Even MORE weird ... this is an ice cream sandwich cut into pieces and freeze dried. It's dry and crunchy, but tastes EXACTLY like an ice cream sandwich. It's just downright crazy!! I tried yogurt and berries, apples with caramel sauce, Skittles ... some of the strangest things I've ever eaten. What a fascinating hobby Cindy and Ray have. And there's more ... tomatoes, pears, squash ... almost everything you can imagine.
Very early on this day, we headed out to a couple of yard sales, finding a brand new $5 casserole dish to replace the one I cracked. Then we moved on to the Arizona Marketplace in Yuma. That is where you can get fabric for $6.00 a yard (and sometimes less) instead the going rate of $14. I picked up a few pieces for quilt patterns I have. No I didn't buy too much. Okay, yes I did. Not that much however, I got away with just over $100. I must be sick!!
With a little time on my hands, I ran on down to Gramma Jo's for some of their southwest fabric. It's become very hard to find, except for here. This is not for me ... being the good personal shopper that I am, I sent pictures to Patty Chance, who said that one or this one ... and this is for her. See ... it wasn't ALL mine!
Just to show me how good freeze drying fresh garden vegetables is, Cindy made freeze dried butternut squash soup from squash she grew in her garden. This is just crazy.
Add water a little at a time and stir. This could even be a side dish of squash ... add more water if you want soup.
She added a little milk for flavor and consistency and served it in this cute little pumpkin bowl. I'm just fascinated with this stuff ... especially when I heard about all the freeze dried CANDY!!! Oh yeah!!!
What's in my fingers above? Pizza crackers. Yessirree ... they freeze dried a pizza cut into small pieces. Yes, they taste just like pizza, but they are very crunchy. This is one you would not add water to. It's just crazy weird. Imagine packing all this super lightweight food in your rig ... you could easily carry enough for a year!!
We spent some of the afternoon trading quilt patterns. Remember this one? I passed on the entire 30 page pattern to Cindy. I really don't ever want to make another one with this many pieces!! I can't wait to see what fabrics she picks.
So this morning it's very early and a chilly 44 degrees. We are off to Algodones to play in the sun, even if we are freezing. There will be NO margaritas on this day!! But maybe three shirts and a jacket!!
Interesting way to preserve food. We often canned fruits and veggies but freeze drying wasn’t popular then. Enjoy Algodones, an adult beverage may make it easier to purchase the items needed, or at least make you want to speed up the process. LolReplyDelete
Algodones is always fun!!Delete
Very intriguing. We have never freeze dried anything. Do they have one of those big smoker sized dehydrators or a small one?ReplyDelete
It's pretty big ... but not a dehydrator. That's a whole other animal. This one freezes the food, then evaporates the water. It's a weird animal.Delete
When I toured the meat cutting process in Denver (1980ish), they take half of a beef, cut out the parts they will use for steak, make the rest (along with cutting leftovers from when they cut the steaks) and make hamburger and sausage out of it (including some of the bone). Once the steaks are cut, they are "cryovaced", then quick freeze with nitrogen. Once thawed, it was as if they were just cut. Different than freeze dried, but still amazing.ReplyDelete
That's different. I haven't heard of cryovac in a long time. Yes, that's quick freezing ... then this machine evaporates the water from the steak. It's science.Delete
Very interesting, the freezer dried thing! A new hobby for you!ReplyDelete
Love the southwest materials you got for Patty. Surely, you're keeping some of it?
Oh I may have kept a piece of fabric or two! LOLDelete
Are you going to tell us about the freeze dry process and what type of machine they use?.ReplyDelete
I don't know about you right now, but it's hot with little wind on the California side. Enjoy your day! Maybe they have fabrics.ReplyDelete
It was 44 here this morning ... Algodones was a little warmer and no wind.Delete
When we lived in an RV with limited CCC we ate a lot of freeze-dried foods. I never heard of anyone making their own before but I'd love to know how they do it. If you want to buy ready made, I highly recommend Mountain House and Backpacker's Pantry brands. I like MH's beef stroganoff so well I still buy it to make at home--heat water, stir, let sit, done.ReplyDelete
Well Linda ... I'm going to buy some and try it. I'll talk about the process tomorrow.Delete
Hi my name is Nancy….. and I’m A fabric addict 🙏 Hi NancyReplyDelete
I hope this helpsDelete
There’s technically three ways to freeze dried most anything But the essential Process is to remove the moisture you could do it With
1 very low heat
2 Sun dried
3 or vacuum
If you’re adventurous If you place it in your air fryer you need to get it down to warm that process so that the thin blows air across the product That you’re removing the moisture by heat
If you’re lazy Cut your products very small and you can put them on the drying rack Outside in the sun yes
Or the least foolproof method Or as your friend does put them in a jar (or bag) and bring the jar or bag down to a vacuum
all three processes are done by removing moisture
The vacuum system is the best why The main difference between them is the water remove theory: Vacuum drying based on water boiling point, and vacuum freeze drying based on water melting point. Vacuum freeze drying also known as lyophilization or freeze drying.
Amazon Walmart target all sell vacuum seal bags or vacuum sealed containers they have a hose attachment you just need to buy the pump it’s the same pump you use to vacuum sealed your meat in an your vegetables (Cut small) before you put them in the freezer No special requirements needed
And yes Ethel you can do grapes green or purple
+Remember last year when Bob’s Eye cut his plums and put them in the back of his pick up truck
Oh yes ... I'm addicted to pretty fabric. As for the freeze drying ... it keeps something like 95% of the nutrients and flavor and will last for 20 years. With sun drying, you cannot do that.Delete