Dehydrating Wild Apricots

I love preserving fresh food for my family. Usually I’m canning jams, jellies, and tomatoes (sauce, soup, salsa, and stewed) in the late summer and early fall, but this year I’m just behind on everything  due to many, many family functions. So, when I happened to be at my parents one evening and they began complaining about their overabundance of tiny, but ripe, apricots I decided that I would help alleviate their burden! My parents live on an old fruit tree nursery and have fruit bearing trees that randomly provide fruit, as they are pretty much left to their own devices and not cared for (pruned, etc) in such a manner that encourages optimal fruit production. It seems like every year we find a new one!
I didn’t have time, or a ladder that evening to pick enough apricots to make jam, so I decided to dehydrate what I picked to mix into our oatmeal. Per usual I got sidetracked, and it took me a few days to get these in the dehydrator, so they were VERY juicy and messy when I was pitting them. Also, because they were so ripe and juicy they took much longer in the dehydrator than I thought they should have (4hrs versus the 2hrs I had planned on) for their size! Regardless, I was able to preserve a good deal of fruity treats for my family for the low, low cost of a little electricity to run the dehydrator.

Tips for next time: Pit and dehydrate immediately to avoid the overly juicy mess. Also, these turned out very tart-plan to use in baked goods or other sweetened things like oatmeal. These would not be good to eat by the handful.

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