Given my family history, it seems odd that I haven’t experimented with making fruit leather prior to this. Or maybe not; since I was always spoiled by having a plentiful supply of Stretch Island Fruit Leather around, I got used to the idea that fruit leather comes pre-made in little packages.
Last fall I made an insane amount of applesauce, including one batch of what I labeled “Dessert Applesauce.” Usually I only add a cup or two of sugar to a pot of applesauce, but for this batch I added plenty of sugar as well as some spices. My theory was that it would be a special, luxuriously sweet applesauce for dessert. One problem: no one in the family likes it. The kids will gladly eat our usual barely-sweetened applesauce, but are completely uninterested in the sugared-up version.
However, it turns out that a jar of Dessert Applesauce mixed with two cups of blackberry puree (we still have perhaps twenty of those two-cup portions in the freezer), dried down in the oven for about ten hours, makes a marvelous fruit leather. Ryan, Dave and I can demolish a batch in a day. So far visitors are enthusiastic about it too. Only Nathan dislikes it, apparently on principle; he refuses even to taste it. I’m biding my time on him.