Fruit concoctions were my literal jam when I was a kid. I used to get the big circular ones that were individually wrapped; the grape was my favorite. I would peel off the whole disk, fold it in half and bite off circles for the eyes and one for the mouth, then put the whole thing on my face like a mask. In retrospect, this is actually pretty gross and I probably gave off more of a Hannibal Lector feel, but I really thought I made my skin look pretty.
It turns out that fruit rolls are derived from a Syrian treat called amardine, a sticky sweet sheet of apricot paste. And the first fruit roll in America, and the same one I put on my face, was invented by the Shalhoubs, a Lebanese family from Brooklyn, New York, called Joray.
Fruit rolls (or fruit leather) are super easy to make. It only requires a few hours to properly dehydrate. I use strawberries because I have plenty of them in my garden, but feel free to substitute your favorite fruit. The method will be the same, but you may need to change the amount of lemon juice and sugar to taste. I also throw an apple into the mix because the natural pectin in apples helps with the structure and gelling of the fruit rolls.
“While it definitely takes some effort to put these roll-ups together they really do provide a delicious, natural, fruity snack. This combined with the ability to substitute many other fruits to suit your own palette makes it worth the time instead of buying the store brand.” —Noah Velush-Rogers
1 pound strawberriespeeled (thawed if using frozen)
1 Medium Granny Smith apple
5 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup crystal Sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Gather the materials.
Preheat the oven to the lowest setting, 170 F or below.
Coarsely chop the apple from the core into small pieces. Keep your skin, this is where all the pectin is.
Place the apple chunks and strawberries in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth.
Transfer the puree to a medium saucepan, then stir in the lemon juice, sugar and salt. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to bubble. Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking for about 10 to 15 minutes.
Pour the fruit mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl. push out the liquid using the back of a spoon. Discard any apple seeds and skins.
Return the liquid to the pot and continue to cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened and jam-like, 15 to 20 minutes.
Line a medium baking sheet (12 x 17 inches) with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Pour the fruit into the pan.
Spread it into an even layer using an offset spatula, leaving about a 1-inch border around the edges. Tap the pan lightly on the counter to smooth the mixture.
Bake until it no longer sticks to the center. Check after 2 1/2 hours and continue baking if necessary. Remove from the oven and let cool.
Place a sheet of wax paper as large as the sheet tray on your work surface. Once the fruit is cool enough to handle, peel it from the parchment or silicone mat and transfer it to the wax sheet. If the fruit is still sticking to the underside, turn it back onto the parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for another 15 minutes or more to dry out.
(See tips below for making fun pre-roll punch shapes)
Wrap the fruit with the wax paper into a long roll. Use a sharp knife or scissors to cut one-inch strips.
- Get creative with your fruit rolls! Once out of the oven, while still warm, gently press in the fruit using your favorite cookie cutters. Don't cut all the way, just score it. Then once cool, transfer to the wax paper as normal and cut the sheet into 8 squares and roll each square!
- Feel free to use your favorite fruit, just make sure you alternate the same weight. You may need to adjust the amount of lemon juice and/or sugar depending on how ripe and what type of fruit you are using. Just make it to taste once it's on the stove.
- You can replace the apple with 1 cup applesauce.
Fruit rolls can be stored in an airtight container or freezer bag at room temperature for about a week.
|Nutrition facts (per portion)|
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|Quantity per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Saturated fat 0 g||0%|
|Dietary fiber 1 g||3%|
|Total sugars 12 g|
|Vitamin C 17 mg||87%|
|Calcium 6 mg||0%|
|Potassium 59 mg||1%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to the daily diet. 2,000 calories per day is used for general dietary advice.|
(Nutritional information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)