Posts tagged dried fruit

Scottish Fruit & Nut Bread

Happy St. Andrew’s Day! November 30th is a national holiday in Scotland, St. Andrew’s Day. I wasn’t quite ready to tackle haggis so we went for a traditional Fruit and Nut Bread instead.

Fruit and nut bread pic

 

 

Recipe

Servings: 2 mini loaves or 1 regular loaf

 

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 cup oil

1 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup toasted pecans

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup dried fruit, chopped (like apricots or apples)

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Oil two 5.5″ x 3″ mini-bread loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add in pecans, raisins, dried fruit, and chocolate chips.
  3. In another bowl whisk together egg, oil, and buttermilk.
  4. Mix wet ingredients into the dry ingredients just until moistened.
  5. Pour batter into bread pans and bake for 30-40 minutes or until cooked through.

*Tweaked from a recipe for Fruit & Nut Bread from Seamus McInnes

Slice of fruit and nut bread pic

 

 

 

 

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Why aren’t you eating…freeze-dried fruit

Freeze-dried strawberries

Have you tried freeze-dried fruit? Or more to the point, have your kids? Freeze-dried fruit has a consistency akin to…well, Pringles almost. They’re light and airy. My kids like to press the fruit between their tongue and the roof of their mouth until it gets squishy. They make for great snacks too since they won’t weigh down your bag and they’re fun to eat.

Freeze-dried fruit has a completely different consistency than dried fruit. If only I could freeze-dry at home! But the way the process works is that the fruit is flash frozen, then put into a vacuum chamber to remove the frozen water by converting it directly into a gas. The leftover fruit is drained of 75-90% of its water content but loses few of its nutrients. Also, freeze-dried fruit doesn’t have any added preservatives or sugars and it’s low in calories too. My serving of strawberries, which is a decent 2/3 cup, has only 45 calories, 4 grams of fiber and 1 gram of protein. Not bad.

I’ve been noticing freeze-dried fruit popping up in store aisles from Costco to Target, Trader Joe’s to Walmart. But the small packets you find at the grocers can get pricey (it’s true that freeze-dried fruit tends to be more expensive in general but it lasts forever). I order my freeze-dried fruit in bulk online from

I found these at Costco

Emergency Essentials. You can try the freeze-dried fruit combo, which includes bananas, pineapple, peach, mango, strawberry, and raspberry, all 2-ounce cans for $39.95. My favorite is the mango, which come as little squares that taste kind of like good-for-you versions of Lucky Charms marshmallows. I’ve noticed the strawberries and raspberries tend to break into little pieces. I don’t let the fruit powder go to waste, I use it in smoothies or fruit sauces.

Your turn: Have you tried freeze dried fruit? What did you think of the flavor and texture?

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