There are a variety of ways that are used in preserving different kinds of food to ensure that their shelf life is increased. Food drying is one of the most common food preservation method that can be practised easily in all places where the food is dried hence preventing the growth of yeasts, bacteria or molds by removing water from the food. In most cases when drying food, a food dehydrator may be used that helps extract moisture form the given food hence aiding in preservation. The device is used on almost all common kinds of foods such as vegetables, fruits as well as animal proteins.
Food drying through the use of a food dehydrator usually requires a source of heat and the air flow to help extract water from the food. The source of heat can vary depending on the preference and may include electric power, solar power or even a biofuel. There are various important components that are essential for a food dehydrator to enhance drying of food which may include the heating element, air vents that allow air circulation in the device, a fan as well as food trays where one can lay the food. The most effective components in food drying include the heating element, air vents that allow air circulation in the device and a fan which work simultaneously with each other in removing moisture from the food.
The role of the heating element is to warm the food allowing moisture to escape while the fan will blow out the moist warm air from the appliances through the air vents. The drying process continues for the set period of time till the moisture content that remains in the food do not exceed 20%. The temperature needed in a food dehydrator for effective food drying usually varies depending on the type of food being dried for example most foods are usually dehydrated at 1300F while for the meat jerky, the temperature has to be increased to about 1550 F. To ensure that food drying is done in the right way, the food dehydrator usually maintains an adequate flow of air in the device and a constant temperature. The most appropriate temperature that should be maintained should not be too high to ensure that the food do not dry and become hard on the outside and the inside is moist making it susceptible to spoilage.
It is important to consider a variety of factors when purchasing a suitable food drier that one can use to preserve food for a longer period of time. The model of the dehydrator, the kinds of food to be dried, space one has to accommodate the food dehydrator as well as its cost are some of the factors that one can consider when purchasing a food dehydrator.