I’ve had quite a few requests for feedback on the dehydrator ‘competition’ of a couple of days ago. This is what I found:
Essentially, they all dehydrated the tomatoes adequately. However, the shelves are a little shallow in the Sunbeam, but that’s not too much of an issue unless you are dehydrating plums or larger apricot, pear or peach halves. The capacity of course is much smaller.
The Fowlers has really good capacity, but in my model (and they could have improved this by now), the juices from produce as it dehydrates can seep under the element-covering base plate, which is not ideal.
Both of these two have fruit leather trays available.
I was very happy with the performance and capacity of the Biochef. It is easy to clean with a removable drip tray in the base. The tomatoes were dehydrated very evenly, without the need to move the trays around. As for fruit leather sheets, Teros in Hobart tells me that you can purchase BioChef re-usable non-stick mats that would be very suitable for making fruit leathers in this machine.
Hope this helps – dehydrating is a great way to go with excess produce, especially when pantry shelf and freezer space are at a premium.
For those who have my books “A Year in a Bottle” and/or “Complete Preserves”, I’ve provided a lot of information in a large easy-to-follow section on dehydrating (there is more information in the latter than the former, the charts etc. being updated just before the book went to print recently).
So – happy dehydrating!