Friday, July 10, 2009

Summer Recipe: Fruit Roll-Ups

Here's an easy recipe for homemade fruit roll-ups (or fruit leather).


admire

First, thanks for all your comments and excitement over yesterday's post. I never know how things are going to go over and when we got home from the zoo I was floored by all your comments! Thanks!

Ok, now for the fruit roll-ups...

I've always been a sucker for Stretch Island Fruit Leather. I buy it for my kids and tell myself, "It's healthy, good for them, low sugar and worth paying more for!" But then I eat it all and save them none. So, I had this idea to make some. A little online research and I came up with my own recipe.

The fruit stands in our country are overflowing, what a great time to make some fruit roll-ups. Or if you have access to fruit trees and you aren't picking already you will be soon. My parents happen to have fruit trees {apples, pears, and peaches} that aren't quite ready but they are drowning in blueberries. When we were in town a few days ago we stopped by the peach wagon for some peaches.
peaches1

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree; the two of us together and little bartering we bought the "over ripe boxes" for a price so low they might as well have paid us to take them.
peaches2

I didn't take a picture of our peaches because quite frankly they were over ripe and extremely ugly. But once you got past the skin and a few soft spots they were sweet and perfect!

process

The first batch was BLUEBERRY PEACH. After I processed them in the food processor I added them to the blender because I realized the food processor didn't "blend" well enough. So, disregard the above picture {I just liked it} and just add them to the blender. I also added a few cups of unsweetened applesauce and the juice of 1/2 a lemon to the mix.

The second batch was PEACH.

blend

I poured my mixture into a HEAVY saucepan. It wasn't quite sweet enough so I added 1/2 cup of sugar. I know the point is to make them low sugar, but this isn't a ton of sugar and the other point is for it to be edible. If you don't want to add the sugar you could probably add some crushed grapes, they are super sweet and would give it the natural sugar boost it needs.

cook

I brought it to a boil. Reduced the heat and skimmed the foam off the top. {If you're into canning, the foam that collects over this is similar to the foam that collects on top of your preserves.}

boil

Once the foam was skimmed off with a spoon, I kept it over low heat and let it simmer for 30 to 45 minutes, stirring frequently, to reduce it.

While it reduced the girls had the twins {the ones with the precious puppies} over from across the street and I decided to snap a few pictures of what they were up to. And because I know you'll want to see more of Brooke.

brooke

brooke2

You'll know you're properly "reduced" when you scrape a spatula across the bottom of the pan and the red sea stays parted.

reduce

Then you can pour your mixture into a lined cookie sheet. I used parchment paper on one and plastic wrap on the other. If you use plastic wrap I suggest you buy the kind that is heat safe.

wrap

spread

Both the parchment and plastic wrap worked great. It's a toss up as to which method I would prefer. So use which ever you have. It will be about 1/4" thick but will reduce to about half of that when it bakes.

Be sure to spread your fruit evenly across the pan. Place it in an oven preheated to 145 degrees. If you have convection use it. Leave the mixture in the oven over night or around 8 to 10 hours. It will have a slight tack when it's done but not stick to your fingers. Here are my two batches; Blueberry Peach on the left and Peach on the right.

done

Mom will probably fuss over her cluttered kitchen, I'll assure her y'all don't mind and that you will actually be pleased to see a mess.

When it's done the edges will easily remove from the paper like this:

peel

Using a pizza cutter & a ruler I cut strips in the dried fruit.

cut

I cut a strip of parchment paper and layed it over the strip of fruit and started to roll like this.

roll

When you're done you can trim the extra paper off the ends and it will look like this:

admire

One cookie sheet of fruit will yield 8 to 10 fruit roll-ups. I also did a few smaller ones by cutting a line horizontally through my original cuts and the smaller size is more suitable for toddlers. It will keep for a week in an air tight container or ziploc bag... but it's likely it won't be around long enough to spoil.

My kids sure loved it.

enjoy

The zoo was fun too... more on that later.

giraffezoo

I don't have access to Adobe on this computer to PDF the recipe, when I get home I'll create a "printer friendly" version. Until then, here's one you can jot down and really the possibilities are endless... just keep in mind a 5 cup blender full of fruit will yield one cookie sheet of fruit leather:

Blueberry Peach Fruit Leather

4 peaches peeled and sliced
juice from 1/2 a lemon
2 heaping cups blueberries
2 cups unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup of sugar {optional}

Blend fruit ingredients in blender until smooth. Add to heavy saucepan and add sugar if needed, bring to boil while stirring. Reduce heat and skim foam from the top with a spoon. Simmer over low/medium heat for 30 to 45 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture has properly reduced. Pour mixture onto a parchment or plastic wrapped cookie sheet and bake at 145 {with convection if you have it} for 8 to 10 hours. Cut into strips and roll up with parcment.


Peach Fruit Leather
8 peaches peeled and sliced
2 cups of unsweetened applesauce
juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/2 cup of sugar {optional}

Follow directions above.

42 comments:

lindsay said...

What a great idea, I can't wait to try it!

Diane said...

Yummo! That looks good!

Vanessa said...

okay, I need to try this! Thanks for sharing!

jj said...

that is incredible. glad you have having fun on your vacation! i love all the pictures.

Scattering Lupines said...

How CREATIVE! I am a private reading teacher for young children who have dyslexia, and I love to make them treats from time-to-time. I will have to try this! Thanks!

Pittsy said...

Thanks for sharing. I want to give this a try this weekend. Posting a link today.

vanessa said...

This is great. I cant wait to try it. I also loved yesterday's post. Those houses are amazing!

annek said...

Sounds tasty...I've never made anything like that before...but it's worth I try! Thanks!

Debra said...

Ohhh Darby~ You are such a GREAT Mom! Your little ones are so lucky.

Megan said...

I love the Stretch Island Fruit Leather too, but it's so expensive since we have to buy them individually around here! I'll definitely be trying your recipe. Thanks!

deyoungsters said...

this looks great! I am definitely trying this one! you don't happen to have a good recipe for homemade popsicles, do you?? :)

Jessica Ranjbari said...

mmm....I buy the stretch island stuff too and usually end up wanting it all for myself. I'll have to try these - they look so good!!

Anne said...

Love it! So cool to see you can make your own. Your creativity never ceases to amaze me!

Anonymous said...

Your blog is so much fun. Love the post, and you can reassure your mom we don't mind the mess!
-Kelly

Natalie said...

cre. a. tive.

Surrounded By Boys said...

You are amazing! Who would think you can actually MAKE fruit roll ups??? I thought they were an element on the periodic table or something!

I love the mess at your mom's, too! Remind her that a house with kids in it is ALWAYS a mess!

Lee Ann said...

*love* this idea! Can't wait to try it!

Amanda said...

looks like you were at the ft.wayne zoo, did you get to feed the giraffe? we did...my kids loved it, a big ol piece of lettuce! you are totally Supermom! I love the fuit roll-ups from Trader Joe's, but maybe I will try this - how long did it take you?

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

Very cool!!! :)

Robyn said...

I thought I'd finally de-lurk to say thanks for sharing this recipe. I, too, buy the fruit leather like it's goin' out of style and would love to try my hand at it. Thanks.

The Howe Family said...

Feeling way too at home in the cluttered kitchen! ;)

Jennifer said...

love seeing your vacation. What a great idea to make your own fruit roll ups. I can't wait to try. Can't wait to read about the zoo!

P.S. loved seeing the old homes, one of my favorite things to do of all times

Brandy said...

Oh I am so excited that you posted this! I was just talking about how much I love the "fruit wraps" from Trader Joes! But I have to stock up when I am in Atlanta because there is not one near me. I cannot wait to try these! Thanks!!

onehookwonder said...

Fabulous! My 3-year-old just fell in love with the Stretch Island stuff - but it's sooooo expensive. I can't wait to try this.

Shireen said...

Love it, girl. :)
I read every word, and I LOVE your "hidden art" in cooking! I wonder how much reading you're getting to do! :) Did you ever find that book, The Hidden Art of Homemaking by Edith Shaeffer?

Also, if you have time, remind of the one you've recently read by her. Thank you!! Now, I'm backtracking to your previous blog...I have time b/c Jenn is keeping Rhys this afternoon. :)

NatalieDeltaGam said...

I just wanted to tell you that your post before this one really meant a lot to me. I have the same passion for my hometown as your family and have had it since I was 10 or so. I love it so much and its history that if I won the lottery the first thing I would do is set up a non-profit to restore all the homes/businesses. It's why I have a masters in historic preservation and why I live in a 135 year old home (in my hometown of course).
Sorry to be long-winded, but just wanted to tell you that I totally "get" what your parents are doing it and even though we only one other old home in buford, I hope we can own and restore more as we grow older.

Jamie said...

Your are so creative. I love that you found your own recipe. My daughter LOVES fruit roll ups so much, but I know they are full of sugar. I am going to make these for her and feel good about giving them to her. I would of never have thought to make my own. I am in awe!

Kat said...

Hey Darby! How fun! Agave or honey might be a good sub' for sugar. Also, I've been thinking about your petit fours.... did you try freezing the cut squares before dipping? That might help with coverage.

Love your blog! Keep up the great work :)

Reese said...

[first message from a long-time blog stalker...] Thanks so much for the recipe! My husband and I were just talking about making homemade fruit roll-ups because his newest obsession is buying a food dehydrator.

stewart and james said...

ok darby - while this looks really great and fun to make.. I'm going to have to go ahead and assume my results would be just about like they were with the petit fours for me (disaster!) but it does seem like a great idea! Also-LOVED the post about your parent's hometown and all the houses they own and are renting. so much character! and i absolutely love the brick street. Great pics!
kristen

Heather said...

Darby,

I am new to your blog and must say I have thouroughly enjoyed catching up! I started with your most recent post and went all the way through to your very first!! LOL!! I just couldn't stop! I have been inspired, encouraged, uplifted, entertained, humored, and moved (and hungry too!-great recipes). As a mother of three under 5 myself I can relate to so much you have posted and am glad to see another "real" mom that gets frustrated but loves her children so very much!! Thank you so much for being so real. You have an exceptional gift for writing! I will be back again to visit.

Heather:)

Niche Topics said...

Thanks for the recipe...I think my kids are going to love this! Beautiful photos :)

mandy said...

Morning Darby...thought I should start commenting more often because I think your pictures are looking great, I'm loving all your recipes, and I dreamed about you & your sister last night...on second though, maybe I should lay off the blog reading!...Ha! Anyway, thanks for steady posting! I'm enjoying it!!

C and M said...

THANK YOU for posting this!! I have been buying tons of those Stretch Island Fruit ones and would love to make my own.

Analia and Co. said...

I found your blog a couple of months ago and just love it. Thanks for the recipe for fruit leather...I've been wanting to make some! Your pictures are awesome.

Kathryn said...

Blog stalker here, finally reporting in! I found you thru friend's Shireen & Jenn deV, and love reading about all your fun! Thanks for blogging!! (esp. on vaca!)
I tried to make the fruit leather. Except I used WAX PAPER instead of parchment or plastic wrap (it was what I had!) and it STUCK to my leather! :( I guess that shows my kitchen inexperience... I am currently hand-peeling every bit of that wax paper off b/c the leather is too yummy to waste! I may even hide it from hubby & 2 little ones and tell them the wax paper did it in...
Thanks for another great recipe!

Dana said...

Thanks for the great idea! I was so anxious to use the first 10 peaches from my peach tree for something and this is perfect! I put my 1 year old son down for a nap and got cookin! I'll post pictures of him eating it soon!

I followed your recipe and it's in the oven right now! Can't wait to try it!

Love your blog and all your creative ideas!

Jamie said...

I am in the process of making the roll ups right now, got to the step where I put them in the oven and my oven only goes as low at 170 degrees. AHHHH. So I am cooking them right now at that. I really hope it works.

tatumfam said...

I love your blog! I have enjoyed all your posts about your vacation and small towns. Being from a small town myself, so much of what your wrote about resonated with me!

I have a question about the fruit roll-ups... do you think this would work with pitted prunes? Would that even taste good? If you think prunes would work, would you just follow the same recipe? Thanks!

Jean said...

Thank you very much for sharing. It has got to be the BEST well put together recipe I have ever seen and I am a recipe junkie :) The fruit roll ups look so very delicious. Keep up the good work!

Jean said...

Thank you very much for sharing. It has got to be the best well put together recipe I have ever seen and I'm a recipes junkie :) The fruit roll ups look delicious. Keep up the good work!

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