This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V21", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
An experiment was made at a foundry in Placerville last week, in fruit curing, by blast of cold air. In this experiment about a peck of sliced apples were placed in a sieve and subjected to a cold air blast for three and a half hours in the cupola furnace of the foundry, and the fruit is reported to have been completely and beautifully cured by the treatment, remaining soft and without the slightest discoloration. We were about to say dried, but cured is a better word, for there was none of that hard, harsh, stiff dryness about it which frequently results from drying by sun heat or fire heat. The experiment was a most gratifying success, and in our judgement is fraught with results of great importance to the growers and manipulators of fruit. The blast of cold air completely frees the fruit from its excess of moisture, with no possibility of burning or shriveling it. Compared with sun drying, it effects a great saving of time and labor. Compared with fire drying, it effects a great saving of expense, attention and risk.
Anybody who can command or devise a strong blast of cold air, can dry fruit in a superior - we might say perfect - manner, without being dependent on the weather and waiting on the slow process of sun drying, and without the more expensive resort to fuel and the risk of overheating. - California Paper.