Looking for ways to include more fruits and vegetables at every meal? Check out our meal plans for help today!
I've put off this project thinking it would be more difficult than it was. However, our newspaper printed the easy steps to making your own fruit leather the other day, I decided to give it a try. To purchase 100% fruit leather from the grocery store will run more than $0.50 a piece, but making it yourself is much more affordable.
It's been getting HOT around here, with temperatures hitting 100 degrees this past weekend, so I knew it would be a good time to try it. I took 14 strawberries from my bag of frozen strawberries. Defrosted them in the microwave, and blendedthem up.
I sprayed a cookie sheet, rather than line it with wax paper, and this seemed to work better for me. I scooped the strawberry puree and put on cookie sheet. I set the cookie sheet outside in the hottest part of the day, around 10:00. I did try to cover the sheet with plastic wrap to keep the bugs out (which we have a lot of), but I couldn't keep the wrap from ruining my puree, so I chanced it.
After only 4 hours, at about 2:00, my fruit rolls were not sticky to the touch any more. That is how you know it's finished, and I scraped them off of my pan with a spatula. They came off quite easily, and no bugs landed on the fruit in the process... hooray!
Two kids liked them, one said he preferred them a little thicker (they were kind of thin, but they were still flexible). I thought they were great. You can add a drop of lemon juice to your fruit to prevent browning, and of course you can experiment with different fruit depending on what your kids like. I was surprised that this many fruit rolls only took 14 strawberries. I thought it would take a lot more fruit. I think it was a success. I would try it again. It would be a great thing to add to a school lunch or bring along for a snack in the car.