Saturday, September 21, 2013

Making Bread Crumbs

A while back I did a similar post to this one on my personal blog
and thought that it would be worth transferring the ideas here.
So if this looks familiar, you know why.
I grew up in  a home where it was just plain wrong to throw out bread.
As a child, in Brazil, my mom would let me take bread to beggars coming to our gate
They did not ask for money, they asked for old bread.

Generations before us quickly learned that stale bread has valuable use.
Did you know that French toast and bread pudding taste better, using stale bread?

Maybe this is the time of year when you will find left over hot dog or hamburger buns in your freezer. I recently found long slices of bread left over from when I was making spiral sandwiches for a shower. The trick is to put leftovers in the freezer as soon as possible and when you are ready to be rid of them, you can quickly toast them up for crumbs.

Put them in the oven at 300 F on convection
( if you do not have a convection oven, just bake them up 350 F) for 20 - 30 minutes until they are dried out and brittle - just beginning to brown on the edges.

Let them cool and whirl  them up in the blender or food processor.
You will have fine crumbs in no time.
Once the blades are covered, you may need to shake it up a bit,
to get the last chunks. 
From the bread basket to the jar . . .
It is one of those staples that is needed when least expected . . .
to top off a casserole, add to meat dishes such as meatballs and meatloaf
or quickly bread some fish fillets or country fried steak.
If you know what you will be using them for, you can add your
preferred spices and/or herbs.
I keep the crumbs in the freezer.

Hints on how to keep bread, including bagels, English muffins, from going bad:
Keep them in the fridge or freezer. Frozen, sliced bread toasts up just about as quickly as room temperature bread.
Pre-slice buns and bagels before freezing them, so that you can easily prepare and pack up frozen sandwiches.
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  1. And I love the Pudding Squares made from Bread crumbs, topped with some Banana Slices and Whipping Cream, yum it's so good.

  2. Some recipes call for fresh bread crumbs, which I make using the stale bread I have in the freezer. I process it directly, leaving out the baking stage. I store both baked crumbs and fresh crumbs in the freezer. Great cost-savings! Thanks for your great posts! Ruth

  3. Are these the same as the Panko crumbs? Many recipes specify Panko crumbs.

    1. Both panko and regular crumbs are made from bread. Panko crumbs appear to be the more trendy crumbs to use in foods when deep frying because the coarsely ground crumbs make for a crunchier texture, whereas regular bread crumbs can have more flavor but will yield a flatter coating. Both types of crumbs are interchangeable if you understand the different results they yield.