Ok, let’s answer the ‘D’ question.
Which dehydrator do I use?
As I mentioned in the book- I do understand if you feel it is quite a substantial investment and you’re not sure yet if to go ahead and press the ‘buy‘ button today.
I stood in the same decision-making place some years ago.
The Excalibur was on my vision board for quite some time…
- I wanted to dry fruit from my garden.
- I wanted to dry healing herbs.
- And of course, I wanted to use the pulp leftovers from juicing and craft my own raw snacks and experiment with different sorts of raw recipes which require dehydrating.
Once I purchased it- didn’t look back. I am very happy with my 9-tray Excalibur 4948. Am using it every week- and as I prefer making bigger batches of crackers- the dehydrator, when it’s running, it is always full.
I make crackers once piled up a lot of pulp from veggies or fruit juicing and a bigger amount of pineapple’ hearts’. Those of you who read my book Mad about crackers- know that pineapple cores are one of my favorite cracker ingredients. They add that extra crunchy texture to fruity crackers.
Ok-back to the machine which does the job:
The key features of model Excalibur 9 Tray Dehydrator 4948 With Digital Controller
- -14 square feet drying area with 9 square trays
- Offers 48-hour drying time (analog timer version is 26h)
- Set temperatures from 35ºC to 74ºC (95ºF – 165ºF)
- A clear door helps monitor the drying process
- 600 Watt heater with 7″ fan
Excalibur Dehydrators use the patented Parallex™ drying system that ensures even drying throughout the box. ( horizontal airflow) For living food enthusiasts, the ‘two time – two temperature’ digital controller allows a higher initial temperature for the first part of drying. This ensures food safety without compromising nutrients, then a second timer stage can be set at a lower temperature to protect the nutrients once the initial moisture is dried away. (I have to say- for now, personally do not yet take advantage of this feature.)
I guess like all the other Excalibur Dehydrators I tried, this digital controller 9 tray version is easy to clean and comes with flexible BPA-free mesh tray liners that allow good air circulation on the bottom surfaces of the food.
So yes- This 9-tray dehydrator is superb. The build quality is very good and it is easy to use. The noise is similar to a microwave which I don’t mind and it keeps the utility room where we keep it, warm in winter.
Did I use other types of Excalibur? Yes- Excalibur 5 Tray Dehydrator With Timer 4526T
Excalibur 5 Tray Dehydrator With Digital Controller 4548
I must say- using them just reminded me how much more I get from my 9 tray model – fitting bigger batches at once – and somehow how much faster the dehydrating of the same amount of food gets done in the more spacious model I own. http://
And what the future holds?
On my vision board since a year ago- I ‘visualize’ the stainless steel model. More precisely:
Excalibur 10-Tray Stainless Steel Dehydrator EXC10EL http://
- It is a Commercial grade SUS-304 stainless steel dehydrator often used in kitchens of restaurants and raw food establishments
- 16 Square feet of drying area ( this is 2 square feet larger than my recent 9 tray model)
- 99-hour two-stage two-temperature timer
- Adjustable thermostat 35°C – 74°C (95°F – 165°F)
- Toughened glass doors for easy viewing of drying cycle without temperature loss
- Quiet 6.5″ fan motor, 600-watt element
- Digital control and display panel
- Parallexx™ horizontal air flow and Hyperwave™ Fluctuation drying technology
- Removable drip tray for easier cleanup
- 5 years warranty
(Cheaper version of the 10 tray version is the plastic one: Excalibur 10 Tray Digital Dehydrator RES10)
And my DREAMING BIG doesn’t stop there.
Recently I added to my Wish List another gadget. I sense it will catapult my dehydrating game to the new league.
Did you ever hear of freeze drying? Freeze drying does not shrink or toughen the food. Freeze Drying is a process in which a completely frozen sample is placed under a vacuum in order to remove water or other solvents from the sample, allowing the ice to change directly from a solid to a vapor without passing through a liquid phase. This preserves the original texture. In other words: FREEZE DRYING, also known as lyophilization or cryodesiccation, is a low-temperature dehydration process that involves freezing the product, lowering pressure, then removing the ice by sublimation. This is in contrast to dehydration by most conventional methods that evaporate water using heat.
I keep my eyes on Home Freeze Dryer – from a brand called HARVEST RIGHT. I am still researching other options. Please let me know if you have any tips and experience with this modality. I will definitely keep you posted when/once my dream gadgets will be ‘MANIFESTED’.
Thank you for reading. For more detailed information where to research and what to focus on when deciding which dehydrator you personally want to invest into- reach up for my sweet book. Has a whole chapter dedicated on the matter. http://
Excalibur (/ɛkˈskælɪbər/) is the legendary sword of King Arthur, sometimes also attributed with magical powers or associated with rightful sovereignty.
( It for sure did add to my ‘ magic powers’. Without Excalibur in house, my second book would not happen…)
PS: I use the original Excalibur ParaFlexx Premium Sheets (14-inch). Unfortunatelly the dehydrators do not come with these. You have to buy them separately.