Saturday, 8 June 2013

Fruit Leather (Rhubarb an apple)

Hello everybody

Sorry we haven't written anything for a while, we have lots of ideas but haven't had time to write them down.

We have been making lots of yummy things though and growing lots of plants. The snails ate nearly all of our sunflowers, but we have lots of bean plants growing taller. We even have mini cucumbers growing on our plants. Mum's allotment is a bit over grown and we are pleased (but she and dad aren't) that there are brambles and blackberry flowers in lots of places. We have three slow worms there too which is pretty cool.

One of things that has grown well in are garden in rhubarb, we have it stewed for breakfast, mum has made chutney, but we have made fruit leather. Have you ever had it? It is like yummy sweets but good for you as it only has a few ingredients and no sugar. It's a bit like fruit winders if you have had them. You basically make a fruit puree, add honey and dry the mix.

Please try this out, you'll be amazed how easy and tasty it is and can be made with blackberries or plums or anything like that.

Here is how we made ours.

Rhubarb Fruit Leather

Ingredients (What you need)

500g Rhubarb
500g Cooking apples
Juice of one good size lemon or 2 small ones
150g Honey (We just use cheap honey for this as its nearly half a jar full)

Other things you need

An oven as cool as it can be and still be turned on
2 flat baking trays
Baking paper or parchment (not he same as greaseproof which we discovered before sticks!)
A saucepan to cook the fruit in
A sieve
Wooden spoon

Method (How you make it)

For us we had to start by picking the rhubarb. It has enormous leaves! Really very huge!

Mattie said he wondered if it could be used as an umbrella

Joel offered to try it out for him

Mattie wasn't so sure

Mattie got Joel to try it out instead

1  If you are picking your own you need to chop the leaves off the top, they are great for your compost and for the worms to eat but not good for you as they are poisonous. You also need to chop the white bit off the bottom of the stalk.

You'll end up with long sticks that are good for games, until your mum catches you and asks what you are doing!

2  You need to chop it into small pieces

Mattie was told they need to be about 2cm so Jacob measures how well he is doing

3  Pop them into your pan. Next chop your apples. They need to be peeled and have the core (tough middle bit) taken out. The need to be cooking apples and not the sort you would take in your lunch box. Cooking apples go all mushy when you cook them and eating apples don't.

4  You need to get the juice out of your lemon. To get the most juice you can roll your lemon before cutting it, like this

  Then cut it in half and squeeze it into a bowl really hard. You might get some pips pop out. Fish them out with a spoon then put the lemon juice with your apples and rhubarb.

5  Put the saucepan full of fruit onto cook slowly, you will need to stir it a lot to stop it sticking. If it refuses to cook add a couple of dessert spoons of water to help, but no more than that.

6  It will slowly turn to mush, if there are bigger lumps keep cooking. You can use your wooden spoon to help break them up a bit

7  When its cooked you need to push it through a sieve as you only ant the puree bit that comes out and not the solid bits (Puree is the thick juice) This is the bit that takes the longest, it really can take AGES so get someone to help you.

8  Through away the bit left in the sieve. The lovely juice is what you want. Add your honey to it and stir.

9  You need to put the baking paper onto your trays and then divide your fruit and honey mix like this

10  Use a knife to help spread it thinly and evenly all over

11  Pop it into you oven to dry all day, really, about 8-10 hrs. It needs to completely dry out.

12 When it has it can peel off the paper like this

13 Pop it onto a new piece of baking paper, roll it up and put it into an airtight container. Cut or rip bits off as you want them. It will keep for months but ours gets eaten long before that.

14  We love making ours with blackberries in the summer too as we can pick them for free

15 You can choose different fruits to use but you must always use the cooking apple.

We hope you enjoy this recipe, please let us know how you get on! Please share our link too.

Thank you for reading, bye for now.

Ethan (12) Reuben (10) Mattie (9) Jacob (7) and Joel Bean (4)

p.s Have you ever tried raw rhubarb?