In addition to the two main ways to preserve vegetables - canning and freezing, there is another very popular and economical type of food storage. This is a long-standing tradition of drying edibles, and dried zucchini is no exception. In this way, our ancestors usually harvested provisions for the winter.
Zucchini is a vegetable known, probably, to every inhabitant of the planet. In many countries of the world there are a large number of dishes by which they can be cooked in one form or another. Homeland of the plant is Central America. It was there that five thousand years ago they cultivated this wonderful vegetable. The Indians even had a legend in which it was said that the zucchini was a gift from the gods, so valuable it was.
Europeans began to dry it only in the 16th century, and in Russia it appeared at all in the 19th century. Since then, this culture has been firmly established in the diet of many peoples of the East and West.Also, this vegetable has very few calories, which is suitable for diet food.
Squashes - a storehouse of many known nutrients. It is rich in vitamins and minerals. The pulp of this plant contains vitamins A, B, C, folic acid. Also with it, zinc, magnesium, iron and other trace elements enter the body, which has a beneficial effect on blood formation and the nervous system.
Today it is especially popular in the diet. Due to its nutritional value and low-calorie, early varieties are used for feeding young children.
A large amount of fiber in the composition of the zucchini allows you to remove from the body excess salts, toxins and prevent the deposition of harmful cholesterol.For drying vegetable variety does not matter
Dried vegetable in its properties is not inferior to fresh. This was noticed by the Indians who discovered it. In addition, such a product can be saved longer. A similar product is stored for a couple of years, after this period it is better to prepare a new stock of this vegetable.
There are a large number of recipes, which include dried zucchini. It can be added to soups, meat and vegetable stews, various sauces, casseroles, cereals and many other dishes.Dish "Dried Zucchini Sauce"
You can dry any varieties. However, the technology will be slightly different. For example, a young zucchini zucchini does not require special peeling, since it is soft enough in itself along with the skin. As for varieties with other sizes and growth periods, it is not superfluous to have a preliminary skin peeling. Although it can be dried with the skin, it all depends on the further use.
So, to dry the zucchini you need to pre-peel it and cut into rings. If it is completely ripe, it is necessary to remove the seeds that are inside. By the way, they are also dried and used as food, since they contain large amounts of vitamin E. In addition, dried seeds have good antiparasitic properties.It is this thickness that the rings should have in order to make crispy chips.
The thickness of the rings will depend on the form in which it is planned to use them later. For the preparation of so-called chips, the rings should be very thinly sliced. If you need rather a dried up version of the rings, you should cut it thicker. Young, thin and small zucchini can be cut lengthwise. Get small plates that are also convenient to dry.
It is worth considering that it contains up to 90 percent of water, so it dries out very much. Only 100 grams of dried product is obtained from a kilogram.
Ways to dry zucchini for the winter
Like most other vegetables, zucchini is dried in basic modern traditional ways. This can be done in the oven, in the dryer, and in the microwave, and, of course, in the open air.For long term storage, carefully dry them in sealed jars.
In the oven
In the oven zucchini dry for 7-8 hours. To do this, circles or plates should be laid out on the parchment, while maintaining gaps between them. Plates can also be hung on special grids. Then during drying the ventilation will be preserved. The temperature is set at 50-60 degrees. In the process of the mug will need to be turned. If the vegetable has not dried up within the specified period, then it will be possible to put it again for an hour or two.If the fruits are cut lengthwise into long "tongues", then they can be laid immediately on the grid, which will speed up the process
The advantage of this type of drying is that it retains a maximum of vitamins and minerals. Of the minuses I want to note the need for continuous monitoring of the process.
In the electric dryer
The process of cooking dried courgettes in an electric dryer is most convenient. In the VOLTERA 1000 Lux dryer, you can lay the cuts on the multi-tiered sections, set the desired temperature and go in for other household chores.Make sure that the temperature in the electric dryer does not exceed 40-50 degrees Celsius
The advantages of dryers are that they allow you to save all the beneficial substances due to the gentle temperature conditions. And it is very important for the safety of vitamins. For example, when the temperature is already 60 degrees, vitamin C is destroyed. In addition, modern dryers are equipped with the necessary ventilation system.
Dried in fresh air products are considered the most environmentally friendly, as the drying process occurs naturally. But he is the most lasting. Drying in this way zucchini will be a few days. They can be spread out on paper or hung on a stretched rope.Outdoors can be dried anywhere, as your imagination will tell you
The disadvantage of this method is the lack of hygiene, various insects can fly, dust can fly, etc. It is also worth noting that the ventilation with this drying is not very good.
How to get dried in the microwave
In the microwave oven zucchini can be dried the fastest. The maximum warming that occurs due to the penetration of microwave rays into the product instantly removes excess liquid. With an average power it takes only tens of minutes. The disadvantage of this method is constant monitoring of the product.
How to keep dried zucchini
The best option for storage is glass or plastic containers with a hermetically closed lid. Such tightness is required to prevent insects (moths, bugs, etc.) from entering the product.
Based on all of the above, we can conclude that the zucchini, dried either in the oven or in the dryer and microwave, as well as dried in natural conditions is no worse in its properties than fresh.
You can also add it to a number of popular dishes. Porridges, stews, soups, omelets - this is just an incomplete list of excellent recipes, which contain dried zucchini. In addition, it can be stored for a long time.
Also do not forget to read our articles on how to dry potatoes and carrots.