food experiments: dehydrator! (soup edition)

We’re getting into drying things with an eye toward using them in soup bases.  Currently in the dehydrator:

  • celery
  • onion
  • mustard greens
  • beet greens

I’m especially excited about the greens because we often have them leftover from the CSA share by the time the next week’s share is rolling around.  I’m not really a big fan of wilted greens, tho’ i’m not totally against the idea (Andy’s infamous saag paneer springs to mind).  I’m also not a huge fan of greens in soups, unless it’s a pureed soup in which case you can barely tell they’re there.  (I just know that someone reading this loves greens in all manner of preparation and is absolutely cringing right now.  Sorry!)  But even tho’ i love, for example, Andy’s chard/lentil soup, we still usually have greens at the end of the week — you can only eat chard/lentil soup so often thru’-out the winter.  Possible answer?  Drying the greens to a sort of crumbly-herb consistency to be added to soups later.  We’ve never tried this so i don’t know how it will go.  Will try to remember to report back.  ;)

And a note to myself (because i often remember having seen a tasty/useful recipe but am lousy at remembering where):

  • cilantro pesto:  At Joe’s Garden (p. 76)
  • mashed fava peans: Joy of Cooking (p. 255) [This looks like it will be a kind of fava bean hummus.]

6 thoughts on “food experiments: dehydrator! (soup edition)”

  1. Heh, I am a big fan of greens, yeah. I love soup w/greens in it–I mostly prefer them non-pureed–& wilted greens can be absolutely lovely! (We have been having them w/a peanutty sauce, which is AMAZING.)

    I have to say I’m not the hugest fan of chard, but I really enjoy most other greens (w/kale being the best!!!!1 I’ll eat it raw while prepping it, I love it crispy in the oven, in soups, whatever. Also collards are awesome!).

    1. I rather suspected you as a greens lover — i have heard of your love of kale in the past. :D Collard greens completely baffle me. We had them once with ham and it was pretty good, but since i don’t eat very much meat these days that’s not really an option.

      I wish i liked peanut sauce. I don’t feeling like my food is drenched in peanut butter. :(

  2. Drying the greens to save for soup addition later sounds like a great idea!
    Please notice I said sounds like, for CYA verification later.

    We had a salad once that contained crispy dried green *something* on top that was delicious. Sadly, the restaraunt where we ate it closed before we could try the salad again or ask what that was. Thanks for posting the link to the oven-dried kale how-to, I’m looking forward to trying it and eating more greens this way!

    1. Heh, yeah, it seems like a great idea to us, too — FOR NOW. ;)

      The crispy kale chips are AWESOME. If you try them, let me know what you think!

  3. I had sooo much fresh dill left over from the recipe that I was making last night and I knew it was going to just go bad. I decided to dump it in the dehydrator since there was still about 6 hours to go on the onion bread. When I awoke today, it was dried but still so beautifully green. Yay!

    1. What regularly amazes me about the dehydrator is just how fresh the colors look once things are completely dry. I think the only thing we’ve dried so far that hasn’t retained a bright color is the basil.

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