I hate it when a loaf of bread goes stale - especially a particularly good loaf that I was really looking forward to eating. Seriously, what's better than a really good piece of bread with butter?
Anyways, last Thursday, I was cooking up a storm - as in, the kitchen is still a disaster. I had hoarded all this squash earlier, so I decided it was time to cook up a batch of curried squash soup. Then while that was going I made a big batch of applesauce in the crock pot, but ended up with apples left over, so then I had to make an apple pie.
Long story short, as I was starting to clean up the kitchen, I looked down at that beautiful sorry loaf and decided to try and save it. A friend of mine always brings the best salads to work and she says she makes her own dressing and croutons. Intrigued, I decided to try it. How hard could it be? After a quick google search it looked pretty easy.
1/2 Loaf of Stale Bread
Roughly 4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Thyme
1/4 tsp Oregano
1/2 tsp Parsley
Salt & Pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Cut up the loaf of bread into crouton sized pieces - hacking up the hard crust was definitely the toughest part. Place inside a bowl, sprinkle the olive oil and spices over the bread. (I suppose melted butter would taste fantastic too but I was fresh out...) Stir it all up until it appears evenly coated. If you have the skills to toss something in a bowl without throwing it all over the kitchen, by all means go for it. Taste one, if you think its needs a little more of something then add it!
Place the croutons on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat (or) parchment paper and spread them out evenly. Pop in the oven for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, then set the oven to broil for five minutes, when the start looking golden brown, pull them out!
Eat with some soup, a salad or just by themselves. I won't judge...
PS. If you're looking for more ways to use up old bread, try some baked french toast, it's pretty delicious, and since the bread soaks up the mixture all night, you'll never know it was stale to begin with.