I used to can endless amounts of applesauce, made from lovely unsprayed apples that I foraged each autumn. After I learned that the undersides of the glass canning jar LIDS have BPA in them…and then BSA after the companies went ‘BPA-free’, I stopped canning.
Now, I’m more interested in developing the arts of drying, fermenting, smoking, curing, and other unique methods of food preservation, such as the process of storing meat in animal fat, as they did traditionally in France with duck, and as they did traditionally here in America with pig.
Having access to foodies all around the world through the internet, I’ve learned so many interesting techniques, such as drying carrots, the way they did traditionally in China.
The main benefit to this method is that you do not need a food dehydrator. Anytime we can avoid appliances and electricity use, that is a MAJOR BONUS!
Please enjoy this tutorial on how to dry carrots (and radishes, if they’re large enough!) And please comment if you have unique ways to dry or preserve other foods.
- Clean the carrots. When you I scrub them, I smell the freshness.
- Place a chopstick on each side of the carrot.
- Slice the carrot thinly at a 45-degree angle. The chopsticks on either side prevent you from cutting all the way through the carrot.
- Turn the carrot over, and slice the carrot thinly again, but this time at a more common 90-degree angle. Again, the chopsticks on either side prevent you from cutting all the way through the carrot.
*Don’t be afraid to cut too much — the chopsticks will ensure you cut the right amount. If you don’t cut through enough, you will not be able to ‘pull the dragon’ as they say in China. What is ‘the dragon’? You will see in the pictures below… 🙂
5. Hang the carrots from a tree, or wherever you like, to dry.
As they dry, you will see the ‘dragon’ being ‘pulled’…they are getting longer and looser…
Store the dried carrots in a cool dark place…
Isn’t this GREAT!?!?!??!?
Normally we would think of cutting carrots into slices and drying them in a dehydrator machine…but now we don’t need that machine!!
You can also dry radishes…just cut them so that the ends are splaying out, and again, hang them in a tree, or wherever you like…
Do you notice the white radishes hanging in the tree now, alongside the carrots? 🙂
I will be coming out with more posts, sharing unique ways our ancestors dried and preserved food – sans machines! Stay tuned…