Monday, September 21, 2015

Home made croutons

Many years ago...when I discovered you could buy packaged croutons, I laughed my head off.  Why would you do that?  It is just toasted, flavoured bits of bread.  Most likely, the bits of old broken stuff that they swept off the floor at the bakery.  But, then, people are even buying potatoes wrapped in they don't have to do it themselves.  Are you kidding me?  no.... it's sad, but some folks will pay for anything.  Some folks  ....  just not me.

This is simple and yet so tasty.  I insist on making my own.  I like having them in a container in the 'fridge just for a snack..instead of crackers.

Make them with any of the spices you enjoy... plus a bit of salt and pepper.  Yummy.

A perfect way to use up old bread..even the bits that are getting hard and dry... just perfect.

Cut the bread pieces into chunks the size you like for your own croutons.  Mine always end up about one inch square or so ... cuz I like 'em big enough to be snacks!

Put them in a deep bowl and drizzle on a bit of olive oil.  Sprinkle on salt, pepper, and some spices.  I like oregano and sweet basil...sometimes a tiny sprinkle of poultry seasoning .. or some rosemary.  Turn them over and over with a large spoon... then, drizzle on a bit more olive oil.  They won't get all soaked with oil...I just like to make sure most of them get a bit of it on them.
If you have quite a few do them in two batches ...they do tend to jump out of the bowl sometimes when I over fill it.

Spread them on a baking sheet ... turn the oven to 350F and pop them in.  I don't bother wasting time, energy or heat on preheating.  When the oven gets up to temperature I set the timer for about 10 minutes...then turn it down to about 250F when ten minutes has passed.   Another 10 to 15 at that temperature ...or in the interim while the oven is cooling to it... should just about be enough time.  If you like yours browned a bit... leave it up at the 350F...but, keep an eye on things.  They can begin to brown and then all of a sudden they may be more coloured than you want them to be.  You will figure out your own temperatures and times after once or twice making them.

When they are cooled I store them in a container in the 'fridge.

Sometimes they actually make it onto a bowl of soup.... like this yummy veggie soup I made yesterday ....  and, sometimes I just nibble them for snacks......

If you haven't already....try some.  You'll love 'em.