I was at the store the other day and waiting in line I grabbed a bag of organic apple chips. It was an impulse buy…but I figured if I wanted to satisfy my snack craving, I mine as well do it healthily. Even though the only ingredients were organic fuji apples and cane sugar, they still had this "factory" taste to them. Maybe it was the sealed bag it came in… But I digress. It made me want to try making my own apple chips. I don't have a dehydrator but at a low enough temperature in the oven, you can dehydrate anything.
I used Gala apples for added natural sweetness. Granny smiths would work well if you like your apple chips tart. I also added a sprinkle of Vanilla Sugar. I just happened to have this on hand. If you are looking for flavored sugars, I know that Spice House in Old Town (a great Chicago neighborhood) has a nice variety. This particular sugar is from the French Chocolatier Jean Philippe. It's smells amazing. It's basically vanilla infused sugar with bits of vanilla bean. I wanted to try out something different than the normal cinnamon and sugar. Although, that would be tasty too!
Also, I hate using the mandolin. In fact we got one months ago and I threw it out because I was so terrified that we were going to lose a finger slicing cucumbers that I couldn't stand to have in the house. But really to get these apple slices evenly thin, you need a mandolin. So I gathered up my courage and bought a new one. A much simpler model that I felt that I could control better. Success! I was able to cut very, thin, even slices of apples. The thinner the more crispy they will be. I love to eat things with a crunch. If you prefer your apple chips more on the chewy side, you can cut them thicker and bake them less, in which case you can just use a knife, very carefully.
These made my day. There was a dark and cloudy thunderstorm that rolled through this afternoon and it was the perfect stay at home project while folding the laundry. I imagine these will be a staple in the fall for us. Hope you will enjoy this healthy snack!
2 large apples (of your choice, I used Gala apples)
Vanilla sugar (or cinnamon/sugar blend)
1. Pre-heat oven to 225 degrees.
2. Wash apples and cut off the top of the apple. (I cut my apples horizontally).
3.. Using a mandolin or a sharp knife, cut apple into very thin slices.
4. Place apples in a single-layer on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
5. Sprinkle Vanilla sugar on every apple slice.
6. Bake for 1 hour. After 1 hour, pull each apple slice from the parchment paper and bake another 1 hour until no moisture remains.
7. Cool for 15 minutes, at this time, the chips will become even more crispy in texture. Enjoy with a cup of tea!