Can I bake with dehydrated fruit?
- hungryinmanhattan Aug 17, 2013 10:15 AM
I was wondering what to do with these dehydrated berries I bought. Since my berries always bleed and sink to the bottom of the cup, even when I toss them in flour, I was wondering if I could bake with dehydrated berries in baked goods, like muffins and cakes. If so, do I toss them in dried, or have to rehydrate. Has anyone tried this and, if so, how did they taste? I know I could put them in cereals, but not a big cereal eater. Thank you so much for replies.
Certainly you can! Think raisins -- how many bazillion times have you tossed a handful into muffin or quickbread or cake batters? Raisins are nothing more than dehydrated grapes. Yes, I like to rehydrate them but I don't suppose the world would stop if I didn't.
NB: the ones on the top of your baked goods will like be hard and pellet-like. Either pick them out or enjoy their chewy goodness.
Rehydrating is an awesome opportunity to add an additional flavor (using a juice, a liquor, etc. for the re-hydrating liquid.)
Our niece is visiting us with a friend for a few weeks.
Knowing that we enjoy cooking, she asked me how we made Stollen, or Panettone, at Christmastime.
Since everyone was up to it, I pulled out our Stollen bakeform, and proceeded to show them, as a all-hands-on exercise. We would bake two, one using the bakeform, and one without, folding it the traditional manner in thirds.
I started by taking raisins, dates, almond pieces, citron, and dried orange zest, and soaking everything in cognac for a few hours. Drowned in a stainless mixing bowl with a lid.
" Is that necessary ? " my niece asked ? Thinking it over, I let her add the cognac directly to her dough mix, and without hydrating the dried fruit and nuts, as we did. For good measure, she tossed in a few freeze-dried berries in a foil package, found the pantry.
The end result, well after Midnight with a Nespresso, was interesting. Our guest's Stollen was not much different than ours made in the traditional manner. In fact, even the freeze-dried berries were somewhat soft. I believe this is due to the amount of butter added to both, and the higher moisture content of her dough, versus ours..
While our version was more moist, our guest's had more flavour.
So in answer to your question Hungry, I would say Yes, it is well worth the effort. Give it a try.