L’Equip is good for its SAFE DRYING TEMPERATURE and low electricity cost.
Low Temperature is critical for successful raw snacks.
If you’re dehydrating for one person, don’t like to spend long hours baking, and want a low electricity bill, then L’Equip is for you.
If you’re dehydrating for a family, then you need the Excalibur.
L’Equip + Cuisinart — Perfect Together
L’Equip is the perfect match for my 7-cup Cuisinart Classic food processor, the one recommended for essene sprouted-grain crackers and breads in many rawfood recipe books. For making carrot cake and other crackers, I fill the Cuisinart bowl nearly to the brim with my batter, then this exactly fills six L’Equip fruit-leather sheets.
L’Equip comes with two solid fruit-leather sheets. I suggest you get four extra sheets, so you have one sheet in each of its six trays. This makes two one-quart (1-liter) jars of crackers, which last me 2-3 weeks.
The 6×11-inch (15×28-cm) fruit-leather sheets sit in one half of each 17×11-inch tray, then I dehydrate fruit, veggie chips, or whole sprouted grains in the rest of the tray. So I enjoy a lovely variety of fresh dried snacks.
It’s quick ‘n easy to make up one batter for crackers in my Cuisinart. With a bigger dehydrator like Excalibur, it takes me hours to make multiple batches to fill all its trays.
L’Equip’s 17×11-inch tray, a lovely oblong shape for cutting crackers neatly into squares (unlike round dehydrators like Gardenmaster, where you must break crackers into disjointed pieces). The 6×11″ solid fruit-leather sheet sits in one half, then the rest of the tray is free for a wide variety of snacks. For best air-flow, the manual advises not to sit two fruit-leather sheets in one tray.
You can see L’Equip’s holes for air flow (1) are round the edge of a raised platform in the base, so no spills can fall from the trays above into the motor and fan. This is a unique new design. The base tray catches all crumbs and is easy to wipe clean.
Small Is Beautiful
We discovered it with cars — down-sizing stopped our gas-guzzling. We’re discovering it with food — small helpings of raw food give more Energy than any amount of cooked food. Now I’ve discovered it with my dehydrator — bigger isn’t better.
With the bigger Excalibur, it takes me more than half a day to fill all the trays. I hate wasting so much time in the kitchen. Admittedly I get three times more sprouted-grain crackers, but I eat them three times faster. Crackers are like money, the more you have, the more you spend.
I prefer making small quantities quickly in my L’Equip — one Cuisinart load — and making up on munchies with fresh fruit and baby carrots.
For supper, L’Equip is easy for a 4-8-hr warm-up of raw patties and burgers, to reach the desired texture. I’m not switching on a giant to warm up an ant.
L’Equip’s compact size is a real space-saver, and it’s square shape easy to pack away. It’s only 17×11 inches, compared to the 17×19 inches of the 5- and 9-tray Excalibur.
I enjoy L’Equips sleek space-age contours and the low soft whirr of its fan (not noisy and rattly like Gardenmaster).
Recommended by Rawfood Teachers
Agreeing with me on L’Equip is Sproutman Steve Meyerowitz, writer of more raw-health books than any other author, including my favorite for dehydrator recipes, Sproutman’s Kitchen Garden Cookbook (© Sproutman Publications, 1999). On his website, Steve reports:
“Unlike other dehydrators that were designed decades ago, the L’Equip was newly designed and produced in 2000. It is a truly state-of-the-art appliance that uses a computer controlled heat sensor to keep the inside temperature constant and minimize usage of its 550 watt heating element.”
“Unlike other machines, this dehydrator will never run up your electricity bill. … food is bathed in a constant stream of warm dry air that removes all moisture, even in the corners. The result is a super concentration of flavors. It is compact, lightweight, and completely dishwasher safe, so cleanup is a cinch.”
When I asked Sproutman Steve why he recommends only L’Equip on his website, he e-mailed me:
“I’ve owned all the dehydrator brands, and L’Equip is the newest and most modern design out there. I had a face-to-face meeting with the designer. I like the unit a lot.”
L’Equip Downside – Its Small Size
If you need to dehydrate big quantities — more than two 1-quart (1-liter) jars of snacks at a time — then L’Equip is not for you.
My reader in Bali ordered six extra trays for L’Equip and discovered its air circulation does not reach the seventh tray! You can dry only the six basic trays at a time. L’Equip claims you can add 14 trays (“expand to 20 trays”) for 12 sq.ft of drying area.
I wrote to L’Equip complaining my reader was not able to use his six extra trays. They e-mailed me back: “The owners manual states that if you are drying over six trays you must rotate, rotation times vary.”
I wrote back: “That’s misleading advertizing. You may as well claim it dries 100 trays but the other 94 you have to rotate.”
Second, if your country is 220v — England, Europe, Australia — then you’ll need a 600-watt transformer for L’Equip. It comes only in 110v of US/Japan. Local electronic stores sell transformers.
For outside USA, L’Equip’s big benefit is its low shipping cost. For instance, it costs $600+ to ship Excalibur 9-tray to Africa because it’s oversized. L’Equip fits neatly into the allowed shipping size of 79 inches for length + girth.