Homemade Fruit Roll Ups So Simple a 5-Year Old Can Do It

12 Jun

Hi, I’m Chef Kef and I’m berry-aholic. 

The whole world seems to conspire against my work to contain my berry habit–global climate change has created a nearly 6-month berry “season,” that beautiful wall of red, blue, and black is ALWAYS the first display in a grocery store, and pints of those cancer-fighting rock stars seem to be on “buy-one-get-one-free” sales just about every other week.  So I buy one (and get one) and try my damnest to eat them before they turn into a refrigerator science project.  As it turns out, strawberry curry does NOT make for a delicious dinner and I can’t eat berry-topped yogurt with every meal, and so they get a little mushy and moldy before I can finish them all.  Then it’s time to grocery shop for the next week and guess what? It’s deja vu all over again.

Lucky for me, the tender angels I babysit all happen to be adventurous eaters who also like a project or two.  So last week one of the KiddyKefs and I took on the task of homemade fruit roll ups to get rid of my extra strawberries before they went bad.  What resulted were good enough that KiddyKef 1 and 2 ate nearly the whole batch (which is admittedly not that big–but the point remains), and as KiddyKef 2 astutely realized– “Everything in these is healthy!” 

–half a pound of strawberries*, stemmed and chopped, don’t worry about uniformity
–one green apple*, peeled, cored, and chopped
–juice of one lemon
–1/4c water
— 1 TBS agave

** you can use any fruit in any amount you’d like- you really can’t mess this up (but more fruit means add a bit more water). The margin for error is in the sweetening–remember that sweetness and flavor will increase after they get dried out, so I wouldn’t add much more than another TBS of sweetener unless you are using WAY more fruit than shown above, especially if you’re using naturally-sweeter fruits.

1. Throw chopped fruit, lemon juice, and water in a sauce pan over medium heat.  Bring to a boil, cover and let simmer for about 7 minutes. Stir occasionally. They will get stewy. At about the 5 minute mark, add the agave and stir around.
2. Remove from heat. Let fruit cool off. Preheat your oven to “Low” or 180F.
3. Puree your fruit–food processor is best, but since they’re all stewy, you can mash the big pieces by hand if you want.
4. Spread the puree thinly and evenly on a lined baking sheet. I used a silicon mat, but I am told that the temp is so low that microwave-safe plastic wrap works as well- do you.
5. Cook in the oven until you get the texture you like–we cooked them at 190 for 5 hours and our batch came out closer to fruit leather than rollup– so I think 180 for 5.5-6 hours would do the trick.

6. Cut with a pizza roller and enjoy.

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