Dry foods are those that do not contain moisture, or “water”, but still maintain their shape and texture. The term “dried foods” is often used to refer to any food kept for a time length other than the standard 30-day period mentioned in food storage manuals. These foods have been processed so that they retain a certain volume and texture. This type of storage is not as common as the air-packing and refrigeration methods of preservation, but it can be useful for preserving food in situations where moisture is not available.
Dried foods are dehydrated by exposing them to an atmosphere with a low water content. Dehydration slows the growth of microorganisms, yeasts, and fungi through the elimination of much water. They are generally low in salt, as well, providing an environment hostile to bacteria and other microbial organisms. Foods prepared in this manner are ideally stored in dark, cool, dry areas. When stored in a kitchen cabinet, they can be shelf dried for up to three months.
Some dried foods are also referred to as dried fruits, dried vegetables, dried meat products, or dried fruits. Any food with a high water content such as juices, purees, pastas, soups, or sauces may be dehydrated. Dried fruits include dried pineapple, dried cherry pits, dried orange peels, dried apricots, and dried apples. Dried vegetables include dried peas, dried potatoes, dried carrots, dried spinach, dried peas and beans, dried basil leaves, and dried thyme. Dried meat products include dried sausage, dried ham, dried bacon, dried ham hocks, dried bologna, dried legumes such as dried peas, dried turkey necks, and dried fruits such as dried pineapple best dried foods in vietnam.
Dried foods can also be used as a snack food. Dried fruits are often stored in airtight containers in the freezer to preserve their crispiness. Dried meats such as jerky, salami, beef jerky, cheddar cheese, Mexican style cheese, and mozzarella are also available in the freezer containers. You can find many snack treats including dried fruits in the market.
Dried fruits are best stored in airtight plastic freezer containers with lids. They should be stored away from all other kinds of moisture and light. Refrigeration is not necessary during storage to extend the shelf life of these freeze dried foods. The shelf life of these foods is between one and three years if they are stored properly and are not exposed to direct sunlight. Refrigerators should not be used at all when storing dried foods. They should be stored in a cool dry place.
The food dehydrator is a convenient appliance that can greatly extend the shelf life of dried foods. Food dehydrators are available in small, large, industrial and portable types. A small dehydrator would suit household needs, whereas a large industrial type is more suitable for professional uses such as those involved in the food industry. A portable dehydrator is best suited for home users who have smaller spaces to accommodate them.