Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Croutons

When I have a loaf of bread that's been around a day too long I am thinking one of two things: breadcrumbs or croutons? Post thanksgiving I had half of my herb loaf left from stuffing and I thought bake or buy croutons would be a great challenge.  These are great on salads or soups, but I must admit that I do sometimes snack on them all by themselves...


The store brand: Rothbury Farms Croutons - Seasoned - Italian Style

My recipe:
Half loaf semi-stale bread
2 tbsp evoo
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 375.

Cube your bread up to whatever size croutons you prefer. Mine are fairly large - probably 1" cubes.


Put all the bread cubes in a ziplock bag and sprinkle the herbs cheese and evoo. Close up the bag and shake away! You can choose whatever combo of herbs you like.


Spread the cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet.


Bake at 375 for 20 mins or until bread is toasty, brown, and dry. Leave them open to air overnight before packaging up to ensure they are completely dry - nobody likes a soggy breadcrumb!


These were DELICIOUS.  Super crispy and the herbs were great - the parmesan cheese is definitely a winner.  I like my croutons a little larger and the little store cubes just can't stand up to these.  The store brand was also SALTY.  In just a few cubes, you get 4% your daily sodium intake.  Ouch.

Mine are on the left:

The cost?  Now, I usually use a loaf of stale bread that is about to go to waste, but I used the full store price for the bread here.  Store bought croutons are essentially really expensive stale bread.  To make your own costs less than half the store bought, and you get to use up some unappetizing bread.

SizeCostCost/Cup
Rothbury Farms - Italian Seasoned6 oz (1.5 cups) $      1.99  $           1.33
Homemade3 cups $      1.95  $           0.65


Bake or Buy?  BAKE!

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