Recipe: Apple and Pumpkin Leather
Pumpkin, cinnamon and apple are blitzed together into a sweet, flavourful purée, then dried to form a chewy, sweet leather.
Words and photo: Elien Lewis
Dehydrating is one of my favourite preserving methods, not least because it increases flavour in fruits and vegetables ten-fold. In this recipe, pumpkin, cinnamon and apple are blitzed together into a sweet, flavourful purée, then dried to form a chewy, sweet leather that children love. Make this in a dehydrator or a traditional oven.
400g pumpkin, peeled, de-seeded and cubed
600g apples, cored and chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons coconut milk
1 to 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey (optional)
Cook the pumpkin in a large pot of boiling water until soft, then add the apples and simmer for another 1 to 2 minutes. Drain well, then tip the pumpkin and apple into a blender. Add the lemon juice, coconut milk and cinnamon, and blitz until smooth. Taste the purée and add maple syrup or honey to sweeten if desired.
To dehydrate, line the dehydrator trays with drying sheets or non-stick baking paper. Spread an even 2mm to 3mm layer of purée on each tray. Dry at about 65°C for 7 to 9 hours, according to the dehydrator’s instructions.
To dry in a traditional oven, heat the oven to 70°C. Line two baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Spread an even 2mm to 3mm layer of purée on each tray. Dry for 7 to 9 hours — leave the oven open a crack or open the door every 30 minutes to let out the steam. To cut down the drying time by a few hours, raise the heat to 100°C. Once dry, cut the leather into strips and store in an airtight container.