I almost feel bad posting a recipe for fruit leather. There are so many places where you can find the process written out step by step and then with that knowledge you can blend any fruits you want and make whatever flavors you can possibly think of it. You can add spices and extracts and you can even steep tea bags in your fruit purees. You can add sugar if you want, or you can add some sweeter fruit(like I did with the banana in this recipe) or you can even add 100% fruit juice to sweeten it. It is an endless world of possibilities and yet commercial fruit leather companies hardly have any fruit even in their product! They look good, but I’d much rather have one of these.
Now I’m not sure how this recipe will fit into baking sheets. I have read that an 18″ x 14″ pan will need about 2 1/2 cups of puree but I haven’t tested this myself. If that’s true this recipe should make about 2 full baking sheets. If you try that method let me know. I do have more fruit leather recipes to post so I will test that out before I post more. If you don’t like bananas in baked goods you might want to sub something else for the banana in this recipe or just leave it out. Taste for sweetness before spreading out to dry though. My husband loves fresh bananas but can’t stand them in baked goods and he immediately asked if I added banana to this fruit leather. Oops..
- 5 cups fresh peaches(or previously frozen or canned without or with very little added sweetener)
- 1 cups applesauce or fresh apples
- 1 large overripe banana
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract
- water if needed to blend
Puree all the ingredients together. You can leave the skins on the peaches and apples if you want, just make sure to puree them very well and add water if the mixture is too thick. You should be able to drop a spoonful of puree and still see the shape of the drop and then shake the pan and have the surface of the puree be smooth. I puree my fruit in a pot with an immersion blender and then I warm it slightly before spreading it in my dehydrator, but that isn’t necessary, I usually do that because I use frozen fruit.
Spread evenly over the sheets in your dehydrator and dehydrate about 8 hours but this will depend completely on how thick your fruit puree is, how wet the puree is and how hot your oven or dehydrator is. Or spread on a rimmed baking sheet lined with wax paper(or brushed lightly with oil) and bake in your oven on the lowest temperature. After spreading the mixture out I give the pan a shake to smooth the surface out. Make sure to rotate your pans every few hours once they’re in the oven and switch them if they’re on different racks. I even needed to switch the order of my shelves in my dehydrator. Make sure to check the leather frequently near the end regardless of whether you use the oven or a dehydrator as you want it to be barely dried and not crispy. Remember it will be firmer once it’s cooled too.
If your fruit leather is still sticking to the pan or ripping in places because it’s too wet and not lifting off in one large piece then return it to the oven to dry out some more. Once the leather is done, remove it from your sheet and slice using a pizza cutter or a large knife and roll in wax paper or parchment paper and secure with an elastic. If storing for a long period of time you might want to keep them in the freezer. They thaw very quickly so just leave them on the counter for 5-10 minutes before unrolling.