Dry Fruit As a Healthy Baking Additive

Posted by javanuddin on Thursday, March 8, 2012

If you had trouble thinking of uses for dried fruit, look no further! Dried fruit can be a great additive to your baking needs and can give a little moisture and texture to your favorite bread recipes. Not to mention, these kinds of fruits will usually bring a little extra hint of sugar as the natural sugars of the fruit have been concentrated in the drying process. Also, it has a longer shelf life than regular fruits and make it easy to take and go without worrying about spoilage. On that note, in the wintertime when your favorite fruits are not available you can always opt for baking with dry fruit.

There are many health benefits to baking with dried fruits. Most fruits that have been dehydrated are linked to promoting good digestive, bone and oral health. They are also an important part of a healthy diet, as they still can count as servings of fruit. For dieters, it is important to note that dried fruit has little to no fat and their calorie content provides an efficient and healthy source of energy.

The following are some dry fruits that are commonly used in baking and the health benefits of adding them to your dessert or bread:

Cranberries- source of vitamin A and vitamin C
Apricots- beta-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin C
Blueberries, Raspberries- vitamin C
Apples- carbohydrates and fiber
Cherries- antioxidant-rich
Bananas- potassium and vitamin B6
Pears- antioxidants and vitamin C

Baking with dried fruits is also a great way to make a recipe just a little healthier. Since these fruits are not processed, so they still maintain the nutrients and minerals that they are associated with, and when you bake with them it gives you an opportunity to have those benefits in your baked goods. Baking may actually be easier with dried fruits since you will not have to worry about spoilage of your final product. This will make it easier to make a dessert and pack it for a road trip or an outdoor picnic.

Some of the ways in which you can add dried fruit to your recipes include:

Folding dried fruits into your quick bread recipes
Mix dried fruits in with a dessert or energy bar
Mixtures of fruits and nuts to create fruit compote
Smaller dried fruit pieces (like cranberries) can be mixed into cookie batter
Include them in your holiday fruit cakes

These are just a few of the ways in which you can incorporate these fruits into your next baking project. After you work with these various fruits you will understand which ones are best suited to different desserts and breads, and which ones you don't care for. Experiment with your family recipes or favorite recipes and various fruits to see which can freshen up a classic recipe. You will feel good knowing that a small addition to your baking can make you just a bit healthier than you were before you baked. Feel free to indulge a little and go for seconds.

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