By David C. King
Indians used a variety of ways to preserve fruits. Some were added to meat and suet for pemmican. Other methods included sun-dried fruits and fruit leather. Fruit leather is tasty, nutritious and long lasting.
2 cups berries, peaches, pears or plums
¼ cup honey
- Cover surface of a 12- by 17-inch sheet pan or sided cookie sheet with parchment or waxed paper. Set aside.
- Cut, or pulse in a food processor, the berries or other fruit into small pieces; leave skins on, but remove any larger seeds or pits. Continue mixing in food processor until smooth.
- Place the berries and honey in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil; turn down heat to medium-low to simmer. Continue to simmer until mixture thickens, about 45 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Take care—mixture may splatter.
- Using a silicon spatula spread the fruit mixture evenly over prepared pan surface as thin as possible.
- Transfer pan to oven (if gas, with pilot light on; if electric, turn on to lowest setting). Leave overnight, 8–12 hours or until barely tacky.
- Fold or roll up the leather in its wrap and store in a lidded glass or plastic container. Snack-size pieces can be peeled off any time. Fruit leather can be stored for weeks.
Edible Berkshires is a local, independently owned publication dedicated to covering the unique culinary culture of Western Massachusetts.