Michigan State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600523
Fresh vegetables provide fiber, energy, minerals and vitamins. Fiber is provided by the indigestible cellulose, hemicellulose, gums and pectin and energy is provided by the starch, sugar, and protein. Neither fiber nor energy is affected by drying.
During blanching, a portion of the minerals and vitamins is lost by leaching--the amount depends upon the care exercised during blanching. To keep leaching to a minimum, blanch only as long as required. Do not under-blanch, however, because the enzymes will not be inactivated, and the dried vegetables will be of inferior quality. Even though some nutrient losses during drying are unavoidable, a tasty and wholesome product can still be prepared if the proper directions for blanching, drying, and storage are followed, and the vegetables are consumed as early as possible to keep nutritional losses to a minimum.