This is another trick I like to do with the mandolin. You remember that tool right? Well if not, check it out HERE before you proceed.
Fruit leather is delicious and really easy to do. It can be used on a cheese board, as a healthy snack, as/or along side a dessert, and as I’ve recently discovered, saved for a rainy day to rehydrate and turn into jam or fruit preserve. They last practically forever if kept in an airtight container and away from moisture. And best of all, making fruit leather is a great way to preserve extra fruit that would either get thrown away or go bad.
Now, I really can’t think of a fruit you can’t do this with…well, berries wouldn’t work…but other than that, any firm or semi-firm fruit that you can slice on the mandolin will work. I’ve done strawberries, watermelon, apples, oranges, lemons, persimmons (one of my fav), pears, melon…grapes!! …probably can’t do grapes. Where was I? Well, you get the point! And this isn’t really a recipe per se. Recipes involve specific amounts and a lot of different steps, and sound like a hassle most of the time. This is really just a trick or technique. It’s too easy to be a recipe:
To make fruit leather, set your oven to the lowest temperature it will go down to. Most ovens go down to about 170 degrees F, but if your oven is a little higher or lower, don’t worry, it will still work. On your trusty mandolin, make a slice of fruit as thin as you can without pressing down too hard. If it’s not slicing all the way, or the slice is so thin it disappears, turn the dial a crank or two wider until you have the perfect paper thin slice. It may take a few tries to get it right. Fill a sheet tray lined with either parchment paper or a silicone mat as full as you can get without overlapping the fruit, and continue until you have enough slices to fill enough trays to fill the oven. Cook for at least an hour. In most cases, it will take longer than an hour, and possibly even two hours. Check after an hour. The fruit will be done when it feels brittle and crisp. After a half hour or so, the fruit will turn leathery and flexible. Repeat this as many times as you like, and store the cooled fruit in an airtight container.