Freeze dried pudding
One of the new additions to our freeze dryer rotation is freeze dried pudding. So far we have tried chocolate and vanilla flavors with good success. Chocolate does not freeze dryer well but food that contains chocolate is often OK. If the chocolate flavor will freeze dry I am confident other flavors will also freeze dry without any issues.
Pre-freeze the pudding in a mold
When we make freeze dried pudding we will place it into a silicone mold and pre-freeze it into 1 inch cubes. Once frozen solid we push the pudding cubes out of the silicone mold into a gallon sized freezer bag. We repeat the process until either we have enough to fill a tray, or until the mixing bowl is empty.
Those one inch cubes are a little bit bigger than bite size for the kids and is messy when they bite into the freeze dried pudding. We are ordering smaller molds from Amazon. Hopefully they will be of a size that the children can pop into their mouth whole.
Selecting the freeze dry cycle
As with all dairy products I like to do a custom freeze dry cycle. Twelve hours freeze and another 12 hours dry time in our Harvest Right freeze dryer. My first time do yogurt in these molds we still had cold spots and required a lot of extra dry time. The cold spots indicate there is still moisture in the food.
It is entirely possible that the long dry time is needed because of the 1 inch cubes we are trying to freeze dry. If we went with a smaller mold we could likely reduce the freeze and dry time. When the new molds arrive we will try a load at the standard settings and see how they turn out.