My first introduction to fruit leather was in the form of Fruit Roll-ups. Of course, I loved it! My favorite flavors were strawberry and grape. Actually, those were the only two flavors I ate. But, realizing that these things were probably more like candy than fruit, my consumption waned and eventually ceased.
Enter Fruit To-Go. 100% fruit, it says! It was not as sickly sweet as the Fruit Roll-Ups, so I felt less guilty eating them. But of course, nothing can alleviate guilt better than making these yourself.
I first became aware of this possibility from, yes, the Ronco Food Dehydrator. That informercial was so good, I was very tempted to buy one! (Of course, since I didn't have access to any credit cards then, buying one was quickly vetoed by Mama. Teehee.)
More recently, I saw the recipe for Fruit Leather by Elise of Simply Recipes.
We bought this super-expensive box of grapes during one of our numerous visits to Richmond Country Farms Market. These are coronation grapes. They weren't very nice eating grapes, though, because their skins were so thick and very, very tannic/bitter.
The box sat for a while in the refrigerator, rejected. The skins were starting to wrinkle. Then I remembered: Fruit Roll-Ups!
I was so excited! I kept giggling and clapping my hands while making this.
I de-stemmed the grapes and added them to a pot with a little water and sugar, then let the mixture boil away.
I actually forgot about them a little bit, so when I came back, the grape mixture was very thick. Hence, I didn't need to squeeze the excess juice from the grapes before continuing.
I simply had to strain the mixture onto a sheet pan.
Next, I placed the sheet pan into the oven. I had it set to the lowest setting possible, then turned off the heat after a little bit. I was afraid the oven would be too hot otherwise. I merely turned on the light to act as the heat source.
Then it was a matter of waiting...
until finally, it was dry!
This was the point of the most giggling and clapping of hands.
It was just a matter of rolling it up!
Of course, it took me no time at all to finish this whole sheet by myself, even though I already rationed it and paced myself. My grape fruit leather was a little tart, but that's fine. I could handle it.
This has fulfilled all my fruit roll-up dreams. I am happy.
(Look at it! It's so cool!)