<![CDATA[Excalibur Dehydrator]]> Thu, 24 Apr 2014 15:30:00 +0000 hourly 1 <![CDATA['Recipes for Adventure' by Chef Glenn McAllister ]]> Wed, 29 May 2013 07:40:57 +0000 rosemary Legend has it that Georgia native Glenn McAllister loved to hike, but was not fond of the packaged dehydrated meals that were available to sustain him on his treks.

Out of necessity, McAllister started to develop his own recipes for the trail, and dehydrated his meals himself. Thus The Backpacking Chef was born — as well as the website backpackingchef.com — where McAllister talks about his exploits in the kitchen and the wilderness.

McAllister penned an ebook compiling some of his best recipes and advice, called "Recipes for Adventure." At 250 pages, it might seem like a weighty tome. However, the book is a quick read, filled with lively facts, advice and information about cooking, dehydrating food and reconstituting it on the trail.

In an interview with Blue Ridge Outdoors magazine, McAllister boasts that when he cooks on the trail, other hikers gather and drool. It's easy to see why after reading "Recipes for Adventure."

McAllister covers breakfast, snacks, side dishes, main courses and desserts in his book. Few people dine this well at home, but McAllister eats this way in a tent — which is pretty remarkable. His tempting treats include Lasagna, Beef Stroganoff and Couscous with beef and tomato. When it comes to dessert dishes, his recipes range from Pineapple Upside Down Cake to Peach Cobbler.

If this sounds intimidating for a novice cook, don't worry. McAllister's recipes are easy to follow and keep cooking fairly simple. He also breaks down each recipe into steps, by what needs to be done at home and what must be done on the trail. The book is also filled with photos, so you can compare your efforts to his, to make sure you are on the right track.

"Recipes for Adventure" covers everything you need to know about preparing nourishing, delicious food on-the-go, from buying a dehydrator to cooking tips and the ideal dehydrating temperatures for every type of fruit, vegetable, meat and bread imaginable.

This is where the benefit of McAllister's experience comes in — when it comes to dehydrating. For example, he tells you that green beans need to cut into half-inch slices, canned chicken rehydrates better than fresh roasted and corn needs to be cooked before it enters the dehydrator for the best results.

You would probably discover many of these tips yourself in the course of cooking, through trial and error. But why not save yourself the time and expense, and let his errors be your trials?

The book also has useful how-to-pack tips, to get the maximum amount of food and nutrients in the smallest amount of space. It's truly everything an avid hiker needs to know about eating well and nutritiously while enjoying nature.

If you like to spend time outdoors, while enjoying good food, there is no better book to add to your reading list.

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<![CDATA[Starting a Raw Food Diet ]]> Tue, 28 May 2013 09:09:38 +0000 rosemary For many, the Raw Food Diet is only the latest in the endless litany of diet trends du jour.

From all carbs to no carbs, cookies to cabbage, it seems like every few months someone is advocating for a new way to eat and lose weight.

While the Raw Food Diet seems to be the new kid on the block, this diet and its benefits have actually been around for 200 years. The first known proponent was German doctor Maximilian Bircher-Benner, who started to look into the benefits of raw foods after a bout with jaundice that seemed to clear up with the more apples he ate. He founded the Vital Force clinic in Germany, which is still treating patients today.

While medical research is varied in its opinions about the benefits of raw diets, most studies agree that consuming a mostly raw diet can help with weight management, increase energy, boost the immune system and provide the body with many vital vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants.

However, there are caveats, like the proper handling of food to avoid harmful bacteria like salmonella as well as planning meals to ensure the proper balance of nutrients, ensuring you eat the recommended daily allowances.

The Raw Diet, Defined

What does a Raw Diet involve? It depends on the path you want to follow. There are three main types of Raw Diets:

1. Vegan: Eating all raw fruits and vegetables, no animal byproducts like eggs or dairy.

2. Vegetarian: Raw fruits, vegetables, eggs and dairy are OK, but no meat.

3. Omnivorous: A little bit of everything — all plant and animal products are allowed.

Each type offers its own advantages and disadvantages. A vegan diet can be high in nutrients, low in cholesterol and high in fiber — but it can also lead to calcium and iron deficiencies, as can the vegetarian diet. However, both can be done in a nutritionally sound way with careful planning and supplements. Omnivorous diets can offer more balanced nutrition, but it also offers challenges when it comes to eating raw meat.

Getting Started

For these reasons, dehydrators are popular with many who choose to follow any type of raw diet. Dehydrating food simply removes the water, without cooking the produce or meat. After food is dehydrated, it can last for months, weeks and even years.

For those following a raw diet, this is a godsend. After all, who wants to make a daily trip to the market for fresh produce when they can go once a week or less? Who hasn't tossed a vegetable or fruit from the fridge that went bad before you ate it? Imagine the volume you might have to toss on a raw diet.

Thus, the convenience of preserving foods saves time and money.

Also, the low heat that dehydrators use is ideal for preserving meat while maintaining its rawness and thus its nutrients — and in many cases making the meat much more palatable.

For those who plan to commit to a raw diet as a lifestyle choice — and it is a lifestyle commitment to consume raw foods every day — choosing the right dehydrator is important. Think of the purchase as an investment, in yourself and your health. This is an appliance of equal importance and value to a microwave or oven, and likely one that you will get just as much use out of. You don't want something that isn't reliable, and isn't producing high-quality products.

Out With the Old, in With the New 

Starting a Raw Food Diet, is really starting a new way of life, a new way of eating. One of the primary tenets of devotees is to eschew all processed foods, and all things cooked. So before you stock up, it's time to deplete your stockpiles.

Clean out the pantry of everything that you will no longer be eating. Either toss it, donate it to a local soup kitchen or fix yourself a good-bye to processed and cooked food dinner.

Stock up on the sorts of food you will be eating. Some items on the Raw Diet include:

-Nuts
-Fruits and vegetables
-Whole Grains
-Sprouts
-Seeds
-Beans
-Meats, if you'd like.

Once you are ready, it's time to start the Raw Food Diet. The easiest way to begin is simply to jump in with things that are familiar. After all, we all eat some raw foods every day. A morning fruit medley and an afternoon salad are great ways to get started. You might also want to research some Raw Food Diet recipes — there are plenty all over the Internet as well as several good cookbooks on the subject.

In your planning, don't forget your snacks. They may seem inconsequential, but snacking can derail the best of diet intentions if you aren't prepared for it. While nuts and raw vegetables are both great solutions, this is another area where a dehydrator can be helpful. You can preserve fruits, vegetables and meats and store them in your purse, office  desk or even car. That way you can be prepared for regular snacking needs as well as "snacking emergencies" when you are on the go. This will help you fight off both hunger and cravings before they happen, so you can stay on track with the Raw Food Diet.

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<![CDATA[Excalibur Raw Food Recipes with The Blender Girl]]> Fri, 24 May 2013 09:26:44 +0000 admin August 2012 is ALL about raw vegan recipes, and The Blender Girl decided to throw an online party with Excalibur Food Dehydrators.

We have wonderful people and will serve fantastic food, virtually.  We teamed up with some of the top raw food chefs, restauranteurs, writers, and food bloggers to bring you "The Blender Girl's Raw Food Recipes with Excalibur."   We created an incredible group of super talented, smart, creative, generous people all living a healthy mindful existence, and dedicated to helping others and educating the community about the power of live foods.

You will find each and every one of them inspiring; and their recipes "rawly delish"!  For a list of recipes, visit this link at Healthy Blender Recipes.

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<![CDATA[Excalibur Featured in NAFEM's What's Hot? What's Cool?]]> Thu, 23 May 2013 06:31:05 +0000 admin The Excalibur Commercial 2 zone unit was featured in the 2013 WHAT’S HOT! WHAT’S COOL!® new product gallery at the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers' show in Orlando, Florida.
Products are chosen based on 4 criteria:
  • Aesthetic Impact – provide the ultimate consumer a quality product or experience through taste, smell, sound, touch/feel or visual appeal.
  • Cost Reduction – lower operator overhead through automation, energy efficiency, total cost of ownership, multi-function or initial cost through a unique manufacturing process.
  • New Foodservice Application – expand opportunities, (i.e., by opening day parts, market segments, new menu items or streamlining speed of service).
  • Additional Benefits – additional benefits not previously covered, such as environmental impact or technological advancement.
Excalibur is so excited about this opportunity and appreciates the recognition! The 2013 NAFEM show featured over 760,000 square feet of the best foodservice equipment and supplies offered with more than 125 companies participating.
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<![CDATA[Save Money by Making Your Own Dehydrated Food]]> Wed, 22 May 2013 08:50:16 +0000 rosemary Whether the economy is on an upswing, a downswing, or a steady side-to-side swing, there is never a good time to waste money.

Yet the average American family wastes thousands of dollars a year on food they toss, because they let it sit on a shelf, in a freezer or a refrigerator for too long.

How much is lost? Recent studies say that the average American wastes 20 pounds of food a month, amounting to $1,350 to $2,275 annually for a family of four, according to CNN by way of the National Resources Defense Council.

What could you do with that money? Take a vacation? Add it to a college fund? Save it for retirement? Anything would be better than throwing that money away.

You could head to the market every day, and only buy what you will use in 24 hours. But that sort of plan requires a lot of time and planning — and takes a toll on your gas budget. It also prevents you from taking advantages of sales and buying in bulk to save money.

This is why many people turn to food dehydrators. You can buy as much produce or meat as you'd like, and preserve it for months or even years to come. This means fewer trips to the market, and the ability to stock up on items when they are on sale, while consuming them at your own convenience.

You might think it would be easier to buy food that is already dehydrated and simply store it yourself. However, what did that food look like before it was dehydrated? How fresh was it? What kind of quality are you buying? Also, how was the food stored? What was done to ensure that it stays free from bacteria and away from sunlight, to reduce contamination and nutrient leakage?

When you make dehydrated food yourself, you know what sort of food you are getting and preserving. You know if it's been kept free of moisture, oxygen and sunlight — probably because you sealed it in a high-quality mylar bag yourself. More importantly, you know you aren't using any sort or preservatives that would affect the nutrition of the food and your overall well-being.

You also save a ton of money. When you buy already dehydrated food, you are paying for the fact that someone else bought food, used a dehydrator and paid workers — who probably have health insurance and other benefits. After all, every business needs to make a profit, and this every bag of dehydrated food you buy comes with a percentage of these costs as well as someone else's profit.

When you do it yourself, when you cut out the middleman, you control the cost and your savings increase with each use. If you truly want to cut down on wasted food and save money, you can't not have dehydrator in your kitchen.

 

 

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<![CDATA[Dehydrated Trail Recipes]]> Tue, 21 May 2013 06:27:51 +0000 admin Before you hit the trail, prepare some of Chef Glenn's backpacking recipes in the comfort of your own kitchen. Create simple home-cooked meals that can be dehydrated and packed up light and tight. In camp, using minimal fuel, combine meal with hot water and it's chow time.

From Macaroni & Cheese, chilis, stews and even shrimp and grits, you can have it all.  Simply reconstitute a dehydrated pack with boiling water and in an instant, you'll have a homemade meal on the trail.

Whether you're camped out at the base of Katahdin or drying out after a rainy day of puddle-hopping in the Smokies, Chef Glenn's recipes will fuel your body with a healthy balance of meat, vegetables, and complex carbohydrates.

Note: Recipes are for a single serving. Increase the ingredients proportionally by 1.5 or 2 times if you have a large appetite or you are cooking for two in the same pot.

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<![CDATA[What the Experts Say About Excalibur...]]> Mon, 20 May 2013 03:10:59 +0000 admin Victoras Kulvinskas is a co-founder of Hippocrates Health Institute with Anne Wigmore and author of several books. He is recognized as being the "Father" of the Raw Food Movement. "I have been using and marketing the Excalibur for over 15 years. I have tested other units on the market and found the Excalibur to be far superior in service, performance, durability, price and quality. Excalibur is a product made perfect for the raw food community and others who are searching for quality in their foods."

Cherie Soria is the found and director of Living Light Culinary Institute and Raw Food For Dummies. She instructs and certifies raw food chefs throughout the world. "As far as I'm concerned there is only one dehydrator -- the Excalibur. We use it exclusively at all our Living Light Culinary Arts Institute trainings and Healthy Lifestyle celebrations. I trust the integrity of the Excalibur dehydrators and know I will get the results I need!"

Gabriel Cousens is the founder and director of the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center in Arizona. He is one of the leading educators in the raw food community, and author of several books including Conscious Eating. "We only use the Excalibur at our Cafe for all of our Gourmet Raw Food preparations. Everyone loves the quality and reliability, we highly recommend it as our first choice in dehydrators."

Susan Smith Jones, PhD is the founder and president of Renew Your Life and Health Unlimited, an LA based consultant company dedicated to vibrant health - body, mind and spirit. She's a motivational speaker that travels worldwide talking about rejuvenation with raw foods and living a natural, balanced lifestyle. She is author of over 20 books, including Recipes for Health Bliss. "Whether you are a natural food enthusiast or looking for healthy food options, the Excalibur is your answer. The grand prix of dehydators. Superior in service, performance, durability, price and quality. They also make the best gifts to give family and friends!"

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<![CDATA[What is Dehydration?]]> Thu, 16 May 2013 02:22:58 +0000 admin For dehydration to take place, two basic conditions must be present:

  • Heat - Enough to draw out moisture
  • Air Circulation - To carry the moisture off and evaporate it. To dehydrate most effectively, the air should be able to absorb the released moisture.

 

Unlike body dehydration, food dehydration is done with a specific purpose in mind:  to preserve the food from spoiling in the most natural way possible. Properly dehydrated foods can last for months without refrigeration. With the Excalibur Dehydrator, advancements and patented technology with air flow and hyperwave temperature fluctuation makes our dehydrators the most efficient on the market.

Unlike other ways of preserving food, dehydration does not kill or cause deterioration of enzymes. Enzymes are the chemical properties found in all living things that control the growth cycles, causing them to mature &/or ripen. When you have a green tomato and you see it turn red, you are witnessing enzymes in action. What this shows is the action continues after the food is picked. Eventually it will decay. Dehydration suspends the action of the enzymes, putting them into an inactive state until the food is rehydrated (i.e. water is added).

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<![CDATA[Pawnation.com Features the Excalibur Food Dehydrators as a "Pawesome" Present For Mom]]> Wed, 15 May 2013 07:21:31 +0000 admin One of Paw Nation's leading Editor/Bloggers, Sara Tan, included Excalibur Food Dehydrators in one of her recent articles: "10 Pawesome Presents For Mom".

Sara expressed in her post that a dehydrator is a "Pawesome" Mother's Day gift for DIY Moms:

Why she'll love it: Has your mom always been a whiz in the kitchen? Here's one gadget we're sure she didn't get as a wedding gift. She'll be able to make jerky treats for the fam, including her favorite fur baby. Homemade jerky treats are infinitely better than packaged Beggin' Strips. Trust us

We've been finding out that many people are using their Excalibur Dehydrators for more than just healthy snacks. Dog treats, bread making, and even potpourri are some of our customer favorites.

Add your email address below or follow us online to receive free tips & tricks, recipes, and product discounts that serve your lifestyle.

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<![CDATA[How to Extend the Life of Your Food]]> Wed, 03 Apr 2013 15:25:35 +0000 admin For those who've taken the leap and started using an Excalibur product to preserve foods, the most common question asked is: How long will this last?

In short, it can be decades, if done right.

That concept can be hard to imagine for someone used to tossing the expired fruits, vegetables and meats that populate their freezers and refrigerators, but the science is sound.

The average shelf life for dehydrated foods varies based on storage method and temperature — the cooler the temperature the longer it can be stored.

Predicting the actual shelf life of dehydrated foods is not an exact science. However, many studies have found that it is possible to double, triple and sometimes quadruple the shelf life of foods by lowering the temperature at which they are stored.

Here are a few tips for extending the shelf life of food:

  • Pack it in airtight containers at 50 F/10 C to 60 F/16 C.
  • Keep it away from light to preserve its colors and vitamins.
  • Only stow the food after it is cooled.
  • Check for moisture in the containers several times the first week after the food has been dried. If moisture appears when it's shaken, put the food back in the dehydrator to extend its shelf life.
  • Stock stored food away from concrete because of its ability to transfer moisture, thus off a concrete floor or away from a wall.
  • Construct shelves so air can run under the container.

If contamination is suspected, place dried food in the oven at 175 F/79 C for 15 minutes. Another method for protection is to subject the food to 0 F for 48 to 72 hours.

Here's a chart that will help explain the various predicted shelf-lives of different foods:

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